This story also ran on NPR. This story can be republished for free (details).

Shannon Wood Rothenberg walked into her annual physical feeling fine. But more than a year later, she’s still paying the price.

Routine bloodwork from the spring 2018 visit suggested anemia, of which she has a family history. Her doctor advised pills. After two months with no change, the doctor sent Rothenberg to a hematologist who could delve into the cause and infuse iron directly into her veins.

So last July, the 48-year-old public school teacher went twice to a cancer center operated by Saint Joseph Hospital in Denver, where she received infusions of Injectafer, an iron solution.

When the bill arrived in March, after prolonged negotiations between the hospital

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