Ohio Man Selling $1000/Cup Kool-Aid To Raise Money For Doctor Bills

When life hands you three bouts of pancreatitis, gall stones, a cholecystectomy, and possibly kidney stones, you make incredibly expensive lemonade in the hopes that some generous folks will pay — and that the local news will pick up your story.

And while an Ohio man hasn’t succeeded in raising much money to help pay his medical bills, he did manage to get the local Fox affiliate to cover his story.

The man, who has worked as a bartender for 15 years, says he hasn’t been able to put in the hours since he became sick, so he’s now facing a mountain of debt on top of his health concerns.

He tells WJW-TV that even if he sold 19 drinks at the full price, he’d only be about halfway toward paying off what he owes the hospital.

After his first day, the man had helped quench the thirst of a few customers — to the tune of $5.50.

Man Sells $1,000 Drink to Pay for Medical Bills [fox8.com]


Edit Your Comment

  1. Lyn Torden says:

    What’s in the Kool-Aid?

  2. Cat says:

    It’s “Magic” Kool-Aid!

  3. Coffee says:

    He’d be better off setting up a banana stand. I hear there’s always money in those…

  4. umbriago says:

    Man, he didn’t even spell it right!

  5. Cat says:

    This is one of the major problems with our health care system. If your employer doesn’t provide insurance, you’re screwed. Even if you buy insurance yourself, without a job to pay the bill (You know, because you’re sick) you lose your insurance.

    If your employer does provide insurance, you can still be screwed when you are out of work for so long they stop paying your insurance.

    • dolemite says:

      Hell, even IF your employer provides it, you’re screwed. Insurance where I work is $950 a month for a family, with a $3,000 deductible per person, per year.

      90% of the people that work here make around minimum wage. Even if they put their full paycheck towards just health insurance, it wouldn’t be enough.

      • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

        We had the same problem last year. We were paying around $1,000/month for insurance. When my wife was hospitalized, in addition to the insurance premiums, we had to pre-pay for all of the specialists & surgeons. Of course, this all happened at the end of the year, so we had two years worth of deductibles to deal with ($10k in total). We wound up taking out a 2nd mortgage to cover most of it. It was either that, or let the hospital put a lien on our house as a condition of being seen.

        Our situation isn’t quite as bad this year, since we changed insurers (Anthem wanted $1,200/month to stay on the previous policy). Our premiums are now only $400/month but they come with a $10,000 deductible. We pay more out of pocket but have a lot more flexibility. Plus, HSA deposits are tax free while premiums are paid for with after-tax dollars.

      • Outrun1986 says:

        This is exactly the problem around here, if you make minimum wage and your job doesn’t include benefits then where is the health care coming from if you get sick? There are many ways a person can become legitimately sick and in need of care and cannot afford it. Due to this, and all the minimum wage jobs in my town are mostly spoken for, a lot of people opt not to work and become unemployed, then they at least have the possibility of getting covered by the state. Since you would be putting nearly your full paycheck towards health insurance anyways, this appears to be the smarter move.

        Also people can get into severe medical debt even if the person has a very good job and is provided an insurance plan. Of course I know people who make more than enough money to support themselves and yet they always seem to be in debt. It can still cost over $1000 for a simple visit to the ER even while having good insurance. Prescription drug costs can add up as well, especially if you need the drugs long term, as the entire cost is usually not paid for no matter what plan you have and some of these drugs are extremely expensive. God forbid you have a condition that needs maintenance. The whole system is just sickening to me, I watch my family dish out hundreds for blood work and lab work every time it needs to be done, $1000-2000 for a simple ER visit, and hundreds to thousands a year for prescription drugs while still paying for insurance. Its to the point where if you get sick and are in need of the ER or a short hospital stay, the first thing you think about is where the money is going to come from to pay the hospital bills and how much they are going to rip you off for. It seems like you need to have several thousand in an emergency medical fund at all times to pay those unexpected medical bills, even while on insurance provided by your employer. Anyways my point is, even if you have insurance provided by your employer, on top of what you pay for the insurance its still going to cost you if you get sick.

    • Jared The Geek says:

      That’s one of the many problems. I consider myself to be a fiscal conservative but since we spend so much on healthcare already I think that we should cover everyone for catastrophic issues. What I don’t want is for people who get the sniffles to run to the doctor. That should be out of pocket.

      • Cat says:

        I agree. But what confounds me most about the conservative / republican position on universal health care it this:

        If you’re the party of big business and the wealthy, if you own a company, or have stock in one, why wouldn’t you support taking the expense and hassle of providing health insurance off your back?

        • Such an Interesting Monster says:

          Because health insurance is a BIG business, and universal healthcare will ultimately drive premiums and profits down.

          Business are also significantly cutting back on their healthcare contributions, so for many large corporations it’s not much of an issue as they’re not spending much to begin with. It’s hardest on the small businesses, but Republicants don’t really care about them anyway.

    • voogru says:

      Cat, if insurance is such a rip off, why not just cut out the middle man?

      If insurance companies are ripping everyone off, why pay for insurance?

      Newsflash: Insurance is expensive because health care is expensive, now figure out why health care is expensive.

      Pro tip: It’s not because of the free market.

      • Cor Aquilonis says:

        Would it be because people will pay anything to save their lives or stop the pain? Because, I know I would.

        ProTip: We quite using the free market for medical services for a reason.

  6. lovemypets00 - You'll need to forgive me, my social filter has cracked. says:

    And now, thanks to the news story, even if this guy gets donations to help cover his medical bills, how much you wanna bet the IRS will be there with their hand out?

    The whole system sucks swampwater. Cat is right – even if you have insurance, and you’re off work for medical issues, you still end up in the hole because even if you get disability pay, it’s about 1/2 of your take home pay. Yes, we should all have a bazillion month emergency fund, but sometimes that’s just not possible to maintain when you’re just getting by week to week anyway.

    • Outrun1986 says:

      Even if you had the emergency fund, once you depleted it you would have to worry about going over what was in the fund, or starting to save for it all over again. Then you have to worry about getting sick in the meantime while you are saving to replenish the fund. This can stifle a person’s growth and life plan as well, a person might have to delay having kids or buying a house for example in order to rebuild that emergency fund.

  7. trimetrov says:

    Welcome to the land of opportunity!

  8. AllanG54 says:

    Obamacare FTW !!

  9. El_Fez says:

    When life hands you three bouts of pancreatitis, gall stones, a cholecystectomy, and possibly kidney stones, you make incredibly expensive lemonade

    When life gives you lemons, don’t make lemonade. Make life take the lemons back! Get mad! I don’t want your damn lemons, what the hell am I supposed to do with these? Demand to see life’s manager! Make life rue the day it thought it could give me lemons! Do you know who I am? I’m the man who’s gonna burn your house down! With the lemons! I’m gonna get my engineers to invent a combustible lemon that burns your house down!

  10. Mark702 says:

    No mention of the cops coming to shut this guy down yet? Did he get his business permit for this?

    • axolotl says:

      Well he is a bartender. He can just pull out his state certified bartender license…

      • Mark702 says:

        It’s probably only applicable for a licensed alcohol sale location tho, not just any street corner.

  11. axolotl says:

    LOL Nice job with the autofocus there camera guy.

  12. Important Business Man (Formerly Will Print T-shirts For Food) says:

    I’m not buyin’ no “cool-aid.” Show me some “Kool-aid” and maybe we can talk money.

  13. samonela says:

    So you wanna Break Bad huh?

    Get an RV and I’ll show you how the pros make real Kool Aid….none of this Cool Aid shit.

    • ovalseven says:

      What about the pseudo, man? How are we gonna get that? You think the meth fairy is just gonna bring it to us?

  14. bigd738778 says:

    F the repulicans and the teabaggers. This is why we need healthcare for everybody. No matter how healthy or wealthy you are a major illness will take you down pretty quick. I have cost almost 300 thousand since November of 2011. I’ve had 5 surgeries and no colon now. I would be ok if I was Romney and had a Swiss Bank account and Cayman Island accounts, I could pay my bills. But then again I’m a real American and don’t mind paying 30 percent in taxes since it helps make America better and I don’t need to hide money to cheat America out of the prosperity it deserves.

    • TasteyCat says:

      With or without insurance, you’re screwed either way. Lack of insurance is not the problem. An unaffordable healthcare system is. Taxing people and piling a heavier burden on doctors isn’t going to resolve that.

      • RvLeshrac says:

        Yes, it is. Once everyone has government-provided health insurance, the costs will drop. The problem currently is that there’s no negotiation of prices. Insurance providers, care providers, and medical manufacturers may as well all be the same company.

        • TasteyCat says:

          Can a system of government health insurance be offered at an affordable rate? Yes. We can see examples of this in other nations not crippled by out of control prescription drug prices, frivolous malpractice lawsuits, and $70 billion a year in medicare fraud (our government can’t even get what they do now right). Does the Obamacare mandate do that? No. Anybody holding their breath for anything, from either side, that provides affordability is kidding themselves.

    • k1b8sn1 says:

      That’s cute… You think it’ll only be a 30% tax rate.

      I’m not saying that the current system is working and I don’t know how to fix it but I do know that you’ll be wishing your tax rate was only 30% when socialized medicine comes.

      As an armchair professional… I think what needs to happen first is to get a handle on what the Drs have to pay for malpractice insurance. Then get everyone paying the self insured rate. From there… leave it to a group of professionals that have zero political party or medical business affiliation/influence to come up with a business (not investor) answer. Take that answer and put it to a vote of the people.

      The reason I say put it to a vote of the people is because whatever the best solution is… it will be drastic and severe to either the companies or the patients… or both.

  15. eezy-peezy says:

    In other news, Mitt Romney wants to appoint this guy to run the new Republican healthcare system.

  16. DWalk says:

    3 days and 37 comments later and no Canadians have chimed in to say how much better their system is? For shame, Canada. For shame.