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Blood Donations and Hospital Charges #258528

CBS Evening News for Tuesday, Jun 27, 1978
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(Studio) Report concerns hospital stays.
REPORTER: Walter Cronkite

(NYC) Details given about business aspects of donating and recing. blood in US. Is noted that even donors do not get blood free if they need it. Case of Bronx pet store owner Joseph Mendelson who underwent coronary bypass surgery, given as example [MENDELSON - discusses his required payment for blood supposedly replaced free.] Blue Cross' refusal to pay Mendelson's blood bill mentioned; is reported that some insurance companies will pay for blood costs. Study of this situation by government consumer agencies in California and New York noted. [New York Consumer Protection Board spokesperson Rosemary POOLER - states findings about hospitals' practice of chging. twice for blood in certain cases.] Bus. practices used by Greater New York Blood Program and by Bronx's Pelham Bay Hospital detailed. [Pelham Bay Hospital spokesperson Albert DECAMILLIS - explains chgs. for blood.] Denials of double-billing by Decamillis and other hospital admins. cited. New York Consumer Protection Board, New York Blood Program and American Red Cross' call for end to use of replacement fees by hospitals reported Donors' continued belief that they can get blood free stated. [Donor Andy MESAROS - knows he'll be entitled to free blood.] [Donor Cecilia DEWEY - has been told that she can join program and later get blood at no cost.] [Lenox Hill Hospital Vice President Louis PARKER - says blood is free, it's processing, lab and administration fees that make up chgs.] Dropping of replacement fee by many hospitals noted; statements by several hospital admins. that, since it's believed to be legitimate charge, it will probably be incld. elsewhere on patient's bill, reported.
REPORTER: Charles Crawford

Crawford, Charles;
Cronkite, Walter

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