Mass. woman fighting cancer now facing $35K coronavirus testing bill

A Massachusetts woman who has already been fighting cancer is now facing down the coronavirus — and a $35,000 bill for a virus test.

Danni Askini has been battling lymphoma for some time, and started experiencing coronavirus symptoms at the beginning of March. Her doctor told her to go to the emergency room, but she was denied a test.

When her symptoms got worse a week later, she went back to the ER and was finally tested and given medication.

“It did change the way I was treated, I was given anti-viral medication and it seemed to improve my symptoms,” Askini said.

But Askini lost her health insurance and her husband was between jobs during that time, and the bill for the two ER visits and the coronavirus test comes to more than $35,000.

“It’s shocking,” Askini said.

And her treatment happened before Congress passed legislation making coronavirus tests free — and the legislation doesn’t cover tests retroactively. Askini said she doesn’t know how she’s going to pay, but plans to re-apply for Medicaid and ask the hospital for assistance.

Askini said her treatment for the coronavirus is working, even though it was delayed.

“I’m fighting it off, I’m doing better,” Askini said. “I know I will heal eventually but it’s been very slow.”

And she encouraged people to get medical help, even if they’re worried about the cost.

“I think people should seek care now if they need it, because your life is more important than how much debt you have,” Askini said.

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