The Orlando Sentinel reported Orlando Health and Florida Hospital will not charge any of the 56 patients it treated who were victims of the Orlando shooting in June. Instead, the hospital will bill the health insurance companies for those patients who had coverage, and absorb the remaining estimated $5.5 million in treatment costs.
Orlando Health, which treated 44 victims, also said they won’t be billing the families of the nine victims who died at the hospital following the shooting. Florida Hospital, where 12 people were treated, said they will also not charge those patients who may need to return for surgeries and treatment for injuries related to the incident.
Orlando Health, which will bear the $5 million majority of the unreimbursed care, said it couldn’t ensure free care in the future, but added that the hospital chain will work with charities and financial assistance programs to help returning patients.
According to the Orlando Sentinel, presidents of both medical centers said they hope the gesture will help in the long healing process faced by both the shooting victims and the community.
"The pulse shooting was a horrendous tragedy for the victims, their families and our entire community," Orlando Health President and CEO David Strong said. "During this very trying time, many organizations, individuals and charities have reached out to Orlando Health to show their support. This is simply our way of paying that kindness forward."
…"It was incredible to see how our community came together in the wake of the senseless Pulse shooting," said Daryl Tol, Florida Hospital's president and CEO. "We hope this gesture can add to the heart and goodwill that defines Orlando."