Saturday, February 21, 2015

Five Tips for Fighting an Unfair Hospital Bill

If you are faced with an overwhelming hospital bill, it can feel like the world is crashing down upon you. It is not uncommon for people without (and sometimes even with) health insurance to be beset by hospital bills in the tens and hundreds of thousands of dollars. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to get out from under this mountain of hospital debt. Here is a look at five tips for fighting an unfair hospital bill.

Negotiate


Hospitals do not all charge the same rates, and the ones that overcharge have a lot of room to lower your unfair hospital bill and still make a profit. If you feel like your bill is too high, talk with the hospital’s accounting department to get it lowered.

Review the Bill Thoroughly


Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for hospitals to make mistakes on the bills they send customers. The sad thing is that most of these mistakes tend to be in benefit of the hospital rather than the patient. To prevent yourself from falling victim to these mistakes, you need to go over every bill you receive from the hospital with a fine tooth comb. Double and triple check the bills to make sure you are not being overcharged, or charged for services you did not receive.

Appeal the Insurer’s Decision



You may sometimes come across a portion of your bill that you are being charged for that you feel should be covered by your health insurance. If this is the case, do not hesitate to contact your insurer to appeal the decision. This will not always work, but it can be a way to remove some of the charges from your bill if there happens to be a mistake or miscalculation.

Get Help from Professionals


If you are feeling overwhelmed by your large hospital bill, you can seek professional help to get it lowered. Professional patient advocates can help people who are facing unfair hospital bills to get them lowered to a more reasonable amount. This kind of help often comes in handy when you are still dealing with an illness or recovering from a surgery. If you don’t have the strength or ability to fight the unfair bill on your own, an advocate can step in and do a lot of the leg work for you. 

Ask for Financial Assistance from the Hospital


Many hospitals are willing to provide patients who are struggling financially with help. However, you may have to apply for Medicare first and get denied before the hospital will give it to you. It is well worth this to get financial help from the hospital to lower your bill—especially if the amount is overwhelmingly high.

An unfair hospital bill may feel insurmountable, but there is always a way to handle it. According to the personal injury lawyers in Halifax at the Cantini Law Group, you won’t always win the battle when fighting an unfair hospital bill, but it is always worth it to ask. Try a few tactics to see if the hospital is willing to work with you, and then seek professional help. If these methods don’t work, you might need to reach out to another financial institution to get the bill paid in a timely and manageable manner.

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