In the long list of things people grow up to find out are expensive as hell, medical bills is number one. As a child, you would complain to your parents when you got sick and they’d whisk you away to a hospital to get treated, only focusing on getting better and not knowing what it cost them. The 4 Nigerians we talked to for this article told us about what it was like to handle their own medical bills for the first time.
The first time paid my own medical bills was after graduating from university. My body had been doing anyhow for a few weeks so I decided to go find out what was going on. As I stepped into the hospital, they took money from me for a hospital membership card. Then they took money for consultation, tests, and pills. When I returned the next day for the test results, I was told I had typhoid the had to pay money for more pills and injections. Even though I was the one that came to them and they were just doing their job, it felt like I was being robbed.
I was making decent money at the time and spent most of it flexing. Weirdly enough, I was at a club when I felt the pain in my stomach for the first time. I tried to ignore it but it got worse so my friends rushed me to the hospital. The doctor informed me that my appendix was inflamed and they had to operate quick. By the time I was leaving the hospital a few weeks later (after recovering from surgery), I’d spent almost 300k. That time, my friends would see me crying and think it was because of the pain but it was really about all the money I’d spent.
In hindsight, what I did was very stupid because I could’ve died. I had a terrible fever that left me unable to do anything, but I stayed in my house still. You see, I knew how much going to the hospital would cost and I didn’t want to spend money. When trying to wait the illness out didn’t work, I began self-medicating with random painkillers and malaria pills. Things got worse and my housemate eventually forced me to go to the hospital. I can’t tell you what illness exactly I had (it wasn’t malaria) or how much I spent on bills. All I’ll say is that I would’ve spent way less if I’d gone to the hospital earlier.
When I got my first job, my parents took me off their health insurance. They said this was the first step to learning about independence. Honestly, I didn’t care. I barely used it anyway because I hardly ever got sick. 5 months later, I got so sick that I was in and out of the hospital for weeks. It wrecked my bank account. My parents ended up giving me small money to soften the blow but it’s safe to say that I’d learned my lesson.
People are getting hit with expensive medical bills every day. Some people are even afraid to go to hospitals because of it. It doesn’t have to be this way, though. This is where getting health insurance from Hygeia HMO can help.
Hygeia HMO has a wide variety of health insurance plans for individuals, families, and even employees at businesses. You can get check-ups, medical advice, and treatment from health professionals at a fraction of the usual cost. Visit https://www.hygeiahmo.com/our-plans/personal-family-plans/ to find a plan that best fits your needs.