The Washington Post says that it usually costs between $2,000 and $4,000 for one day of life support in an intensive care unit. The cost depends on how much care the patient needs, and 60 Minutes says that costs can skyrocket to as much as $10,000 a day.
The Washington Post says that a team of nurses and doctors must care for a person on life support around the clock. The cost of life support includes the upkeep and use of hospital facilities as well as the cost of running the machines that keep people alive. Patients on life support can be stuck in bed for months or even years at a time. Because of this, preventive care and treatment for things like bed sores add to the cost.
According to the Cleveland Clinic, each situation needs a different level of care. Artificial nutrition and hydration are the lowest levels of life support. This is when a patient gets food and water through a feeding tube and IV. When most people think of life support, they think of the most complicated types of care, like mechanical ventilation and kidney dialysis. These types of life support systems are used when a patient’s organs have stopped working and he can’t breathe or get rid of waste on his own.