DENVER — Three hospitals taking care of people wounded in the Colorado theater shooting said Wednesday they will limit or completely wipe out medical bills for the victims.
Some victims, many of them young, are uninsured and face mounting hospital bills.
Children’s Hospital Colorado announced it would use donations and its charity care fund to cover the medical expenses of the uninsured. For those who do have insurance, the hospital says it will waive all co-pays for shooting victims it is treating.
“We are committed to supporting these families as they heal,” according to a statement from the hospital, which treated six shooting victims.
HealthOne, which owns the Medical Center of Aurora and Swedish Medical Center, also says it will limit or eliminate charges based on the individual circumstances of the patients. Those hospitals have treated 22 shooting victims.
There was no immediate word on what the other two hospitals would to do.
The victims, however, still face a long recovery ahead and the associated medical costs — without health insurance. And HealthOne cautioned that its policy may not apply to all doctors working in its hospitals.
Members of the public, along with Warner Bros., the studio that released the Batman movie “The Dark Knight Rises,” have contributed nearly $2 million to help victims pay their bills. One family is raising money on its own online.
There’s no exact count of how many of the victims have no health insurance. But statistics suggest many of them might not be covered.
Nearly one in three Coloradans, or about 1.5 million, either have no health insurance or have coverage that is inadequate, according to a 2011 report by The Colorado Trust, a health care advocacy group.
The highest uninsured rate was among adults between 18 and 34.
And many of those injured in the shootings are in that age group.
State officials said they are not sure whether any of the victims qualify for emergency Medicaid assistance available to needy patients. Victims could also get financial assistance from a state program that helps people hurt during crimes.