Would your employer pay your medically-related travel expenses?
Carol and Ed Vogel enjoyed a weeklong all-expenses-paid trip to a Newport Beach resort last month, and they’re scheduled to return in a couple of weeks.
The Nevada couple didn’t need frequent-flier miles or credit card rewards to get free airfare and hotel stay as well as $1,000 in spending money. It was all because of Carol Vogel’s ailing hips and an employer’s frustration with the high cost of U.S. healthcare.
Her husband’s employer, newspaper publisher Stephens Media, sends employees and their family members needing hip and knee replacements to a handful of hospitals across the country, including one in Orange County, that agreed to a low, fixed rate for surgery and scored well on quality of care.
This year, grocery giant Kroger Co. has flown nearly two dozen workers to Hoag Orthopedic Institute in Irvine and several other hospitals across the U.S. for hip, knee or spinal-fusion surgeries in an effort to save money and improve care. Starting in January, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. will offer employees and dependents heart, spine and transplant surgeries at no cost at six major hospital systems across the nation, with free travel and lodging.
Would you travel across the country to save money on a medical procedure? Tell us about it in our discussion forum!