Orlando hospitals that helped to treat victims of the Pulse club massacre have announced they won’t be billing victims.
Orlando Health and Florida Hospital both provided care to victims of the Pulse gay club shooting, when 49 people were killed and more than 50 injured.
The majority of the victims were LGBT people of Hispanic heritage, and there were fears that some of the survivors, a number of whom had no medical insurance, could be landed with huge bills and expenses for the treatment they received.
However, the two medical bodies announced this week that they will not bill survivors of the Pulse nightclub massacre for out-of-pocket medical expenses.
The cost of the gesture is estimated at $5.5 million.
Orlando Health runs the Orlando Regional Medical Center, which is just a few streets away from the Pulse site – treating 44 survivors as well as nine victims who died in the hospital. Costs for all 53 patients will be waived.
David Strong, CEO of Orlando Health, said: “The Pulse shooting was a horrendous tragedy for the victims, their families and our entire community.
“During this very trying time, many organisations, individuals and charities have reached out to Orlando Health to show their support. This is simply our way of paying that kindness forward.”
The hospital chain still plans to recover some costs from insurance providers where patients had healthcare cover- but it will absorb the cost of any charges the patients’ may have had to pay, alongside the entire cost of treatment for uninsured patients.
Meanwhile, Florida Hospital – which provided care to a smaller number of patients – says it does not plan to bill at all.