Letters to the Editor

Hospital 'price gouging'

Re "You better shop around" in the Business section Oct. 8: How is it that Selma Community Hospital, owned by Adventist Health, can charge $11,528 for delivering a baby when the national average is $4,502?

Selma has no critical care capability for adults, much less a newborn. Fresno hospitals would have to be able to rescue any mothers and infants who could potentially deteriorate. And that would depend on whether there were available beds to accommodate them in a timely manner.

As a taxpayer and a nurse, I resent this unethical price gouging. The fact that these hospitals are designated as "rural" qualifies them for a higher rate of government support already.

If they can charge these prices, without having the overhead relative to the service ... well, you get the picture.

Lupe Mirelez, R.N.