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B.C. health authority sues U.K. man for almost $89K in hospital costs

Interest on the original $65,758 bill keeps adding up, even after a $21,1160 payment.
St. Paul's Hospital site on Vancouver's Burrard Street in Vancouver. File photo by Dan Toulgoet

Vancouver-based Providence Health Care (PHC) is suing a British man for health-care costs incurred after he was admitted to emergency at St. Paul’s Hospital in September 2019.

In a notice of civil claimed filed in B.C. Supreme Court Oct. 7, PHC alleges Ronald Brown’s spouse signed a rate schedule and payment agreement on his behalf.

The bill now stands at $88,839.

The claim said Brown received emergency care and was then transferred to a general ward between Sept. 26 and Oct. 9, 2019, and received medical care, treatments and services.

The claim said Brown was invoiced $65,758, with a copy sent to Global Excel Management as the authorized claims administrator, a third-party health insurer with whom Brown had an insurance policy.

“The amount of the invoice was calculated by the plaintiff in a manner approved by the minister of health, based on rates or charges approved by the minister,” the claim said.

Further, it said, Excel remitted partial payment of $21,1160 with a note saying it believed that was the proper amount due.

Even after that, PCH asserts, the debt now stands at the $88,839 figure.

The claim said B.C.’s Hospital Insurance Act (HIA) is not liable for payment for costs of anyone’s treatment if they are not a beneficiary under the provincial plan.

“The defendant is not a beneficiary for the purposes of HIA,” the claim said.

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