I am, as always, behind on paperwork. Our tax lady doesn't even bother scheduling us until April, and as always I put everything off until I have no choice. It's a genuine pain in the hiney to do our taxes. Sorting the medical crap alone can take HOURS. But....it's done.
Historically, our worst year was transplant year, 2012, with a total of $19,157 in out-of-pocket medical expenses (and 14,701 miles traveled for medical purposes!), and our best since then was 2014 with $5,500 out of pocket and 2015 with only 2,261 miles of travel.
2016 had some interesting challenges.
Our insurance has changed the way things are reimbursed and we didn't figure this out until bills started rolling in after Babygirl's February blood tests. Our home hospital and her new neurology center are "Level One" providers. Our deductible for the family using these providers is $4400/year. The hospital where Hubby gets his pain management, and Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (where Babygirl gets all of her transplant-related care) are Level Two providers. Our family deductible there is $8800/year. Hubby's pain management sends tests to a Level Three lab, which is not covered AT ALL.
Babygirl's first set of blood tests at CHOP in February came to just over $10,000. We ended up owing about $3500 for those visits (I negotiated $1500 of her neurology visit down to $200, just settled: The insurance said her treatment was "experimental" even though they had paid for the SAME treatment three months earlier) but the rest was lab costs, and I had to set up a payment plan. I learned that if I had had the labs drawn at home, it would have cost half as much, so all further labs were done here to decrease our portion of the costs. Hubby's Level Three lab cost is still under appeal.
Pharmacy costs: $3,415.90. That includes two $300 co-payments for Botox.
Medical copayments and deductibles: $7,302.
Mileage: 3,040 (worth $.19/mile for tax purposes, $577.60)
Tolls and parking: $157.27
Grand total out-of-pocket: $11,834.77.
Add an additional pre-tax $215 for our part of health/dental/vision that comes out of my paycheck, sight unseen.
We'll do a bit better this year. All Babygirl's labs will be drawn locally. We're considering whether switching Hubby to our hospital's pain management program is reasonable. Babygirl has been taken off of some medications, and there are no copayments for Botox at her new neurologist's. But this is the second year in a row our costs have come up, and with the loss of Hubby's income last year the hit was especially onerous.