How Times Have Changed!

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, Spring 2008,
Spring 2008
Original Images:

The bill included with this article is the Grace Hospital bill for the birth of Marilyn Freatman (Begole) in 1927. The cost of Labor Room services amounted to a total of $10.00. The board and room and general care charges for the eleven day stay was $3.50 per day for the mother and $1.00 per day for baby Marilyn. The total bill was $59.50. The back of the bill provided an explanation of the excessive cost of the delivery and eleven day stay:

“An Explanation and a Request: The cost of running a hospital is very high…In explanation of the high cost of hospital care it may be stated that in addition to all the departments of a hotel, we are obliged to maintain an Ambulance Department, an X-Ray and Radio-Therapy Department, a Surgical and Operating Department, a Nurse Training School with trained nurse Supervisors and Instructors, a Department of Physio-Therapy and Hydro-Therapy, a large suite of Laboratories, a completely stocked Drug Store, an Anesthetic Department with a corps of Anesthetists, a large group of Resident Medical Interns and an Attending Staff, comprising many of the leading physicians, surgeons and specialists in the city.

The equipment and personnel for many of these departments are highly technical, specialized and expensive. Notwithstanding the above, your hospital bill per day has been less than you could obtain board and room in a first Class hotel.”

We don't have the exact cost of what a hospital today would charge for the delivery room and an eleven day stay by a mother and baby but I think it would be safe to say it would be considerably more than the cost of board and room in a first class hotel. Oh, the good old days!