Treat this story as a mystery story. A bad deed has been done. The mystery is in how it is undone.
Background: A family member died three weeks ago; the circumstances made her an excellent organ donor, which she wanted to be. Presumably, a number of people now have better lives because of her death.
The bad deed: The hospital where her organs were collected have charged her widower for the procedure. Or, more precisely, they’ve charged the insurance. But insurance comes with a deductable. The bill is very high; around $20K.**
I’ve looked around on the internet. The family of the donor is never charged, many sites say. In fact, one site says, sometimes the hospital donates the costs. In any case, if something has to be paid, it is the recipients’ responsibility.
I cannot find any reference to any legal protection the donor’s family has. But stay tuned. You can bet that if you hand an unjust bill for 20K to a very stressed out individual, there will be objections. And the insurance company is not too happy either.
This is all in the US, of course.
**Actually, the whole bill is $38K; she arrived at the hospital brain dead, but it was about 15 hours before that was officially determined and declared. It looks like those hours may have cost somewhere around 15-18K, from what I understand.
This may well seem quite insane. It is medicine in American.