medical bills

A man and woman looking over their bills. Representative image.

The United States is the second most expensive country in the world to give birth, after Japan. In Japan, it costs around $61,000 to have a vaginal delivery, although those costs can be offset by government health insurance.

In the U.S., it costs around $14,000 to have a child without insurance, although there are a lot of factors that affect the price, including where you give birth, the type of insurance you carry and if there are any complications.

While $14,000 is a lot of money for most people, Hanna Castle from the Columbus, Ohio, area received a $4 million hospital bill after having quadruplets and that didn’t even include the delivery. All 4 of the children needed to spend time in the NICU for lengths between 64 and 147 days.

Castle explained the costs in a video that has been seen nearly 8 million times.

That hurt 🤣 


That hurt 🤣 #Quadruplets #nicu #america #healthcare

The 4 children, Atlas, Dominic, Magnolia and Morgan, were all born at 28 weeks via Cesarean section and were treated at separate NICUs. According to Investopedia, a stay in the NICU can cost anywhere from $3,000 to $20,000 a day in the United States.

The smallest child of the 4, Atlas, weighed just 1.5 pounds but had the shortest stay in the NICU of 64 days. His total bill came to $714,747.15. Next was Magnolia who stayed 74 days at a cost of $728,625.56. Morgan stayed 86 days for $976,415.69 and Dominic stayed the longest, 147 days, for $1,626139.55.

All in all, the total bill for the NICU for the Castle Quads was $4,045,927.95.

Commenters on the video couldn’t believe how anyone could pay such a massive bill. "To put this in perspective, it would take $500 a month for 675 years to pay this off," Gouda wrote.

The good news for the Castle family was that Medicaid of Ohio picked up the entire tab. Knowing that the babies would need extensive care after being born, the couple quit their jobs to qualify for financial assistance. "At 16 weeks pregnant, I decided to quit my job to get some of that assistance because there was no other way," Castle told Good Morning America.

"I moved my mom in with us to kind of help financially for the first year and see how the kids were going to be,” she added. In Ohio, adults with incomes up to 138% of the federal poverty level and children with a household income of 211% of the poverty level can qualify for Medicaid.

In a recent Facebook post, Castle discussed the tough challenges of being the parent of multiples in America.

“You can believe that you’ll have 1 full-term child, but every pregnancy is different. A lot of us do not believe in terminating healthy children because of finances. Things happen. No one wants to live off of government assistance just to be able to survive and frankly there’s a lot of shame behind it,” she wrote. “But other countries don’t even have to worry about that. Do they truly think that a 1-time tax credit per year is enough to get us to keep having children in this economy? With the type of medical bills we rack up here? With the lack of financial medical assistance we have here?”