Girl’s $143,000 bill for snakebite treatment reveals antivenin price gouging

Girl’s $143,000 bill for snakebite treatment reveals antivenin price gouging

Enlarge / Even this copperhead thinks that’s crazy. (credit: Getty | Smith Collection)

Snakebites can be painful and scary. But they may seem like weak nips after the hospital’s billing department sinks their teeth in.

Emergency treatment for a copperhead bite in a 9-year-old Indiana girl last summer cost a jaw-dropping $142,938, according to a report by Kaiser Health News. The bill includes $67,957 for four vials of antivenin. That works out to $16,989.25 for each vial—more than five times the average list price of $3,198. The bill also included $55,577.64 for air-ambulance transportation.

The girl, now 10, was away at summer camp last July, hiking in Illinois. When she went to step over a cluster of rocks on the trail, she got a bite on a toe on her right foot. Her camp counselors suspected it was a copperhead snake that bit her and rushed to get

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