At the time of the snakebite all Eric Ferguson could think of was being treated.
Now he’s thinking about being broke.
In September of 2013 Eric was bitten while taking out the trash at his home.
The Lake Norman Regional Medical Center in Mooresville, North Carolina treated him with four containers of anti-venom.
The treatments took a total of 18 hours and resulted in the nearly $90,000 tab.
"It was just the sticker shock," Eric told the Charlotte Observer.
Some digging found the hospital charged $81,000 for the anti-venom. Curious, Eric took to the internet and found the same medicine for anywhere from $750 to $12,000 per vial, much less than they were asked to pay.
Eric and his wife Laura found a little luck when Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina helped cut the bill to $20,227 thanks to a contractual agreement.
Lake Norman is a for-profit facility, when asked about the bill they said "if we did not start with the list prices we have, we would not end up with enough revenue to remain in operation." The hospital admitted patients who don’t have insurance pay far less than those who do. Those discounts run from 62% to 65% meaning insured patients and their companies take up that slack.