Woman charged $847 'facility fee' for telehealth visit

Brittany Tesso, a mother in Colorado, was recently charged $847.35 for a "facility fee" for her 3-year-old son's telehealth visit at Aurora-based Children's Hospital Colorado, KDVR reported Jan. 23.

She also received a bill of $676.86, which she paid. Her son's visit was to see if he needed speech therapy.

"I was like, 'Facility fee? I didn't go to your facility. I was at home and as far as I could tell some of the doctors were at home too.' And [a hospital representative] said, 'Well, we charge the same whether you come to the facility or it's a telehealth appointment,'" Ms. Tesso told KDVR.

Adam Fox, deputy director at the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative, a healthcare consumer advocacy organization, told KDVR the act was unfair.

"This sounds like essentially gouging," he said. "It's really charging for a facility, i.e., the hospital, which they are not even accessing." 

Children's Hospital Colorado provided a statement to KDVR:

"This is not exclusively a Children's Colorado issue, and we suggest that you speak to other providers, insurers and legislators to provide a broader perspective on the system that governs how we all operate. We want affordable and accessible care for all of our patients, and we continually look at our own practices to see where we can adjust and improve while at the same time we work to build a functioning system of care for kids."

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