Sunday, September 17, 2017

5 Ways to Get Out of Medical Bill Debt

With skyrocketing healthcare costs, spending less and working more is no longer a viable plan to reduce medical bill debt for many people. Patients often walk away from a major acute healthcare incident with a bill totaling tens of thousands of dollars after insurance coverage. 

A lot of patients also have disabilities or chronic or rare conditions that prevent them from making enough money to pay down their debts and/or create a cycle of ever-increasing debt. The following five solutions help make medical bill debt more manageable:

Review Itemized Bills

Medical billing staff often make mistakes and computer software can experience glitches. Always ask for itemized statements that clearly outline the services that you received and the associated costs and bring any errors that you find to the attention of billing agents. 

If you don’t currently look at itemized bills and you’re dealing with old debt, contact service providers, request itemized statements and then address errors with them or collection agencies.

Negotiate with Provider

Healthcare service providers reduce bills for a wide range of reasons. For example, you might be able to offer the provider a cash settlement that is a percentage less than the total due. 

Many providers also work with credit services that allow you to set up an interest-based installment plan. Some providers even reduce bills for business patients who agree to pay back what they owe through products and services.

Contact Charity Programs

Ask staff at your local healthcare system about “hardship” or “charity” care for low-income and disabled patients. These programs help reduce past and future costs associated with services not covered by insurance. 

Many community and national charities, including those associated with specific diseases, help patients with severe, rare and terminal conditions pay old bills, negotiate settlements and pay future co-pay and transportation costs.

File a Complaint

If your provider charged you more for a service than the regional average cost, especially during an incident when you were unconscious or too severely sick to compare prices and go elsewhere, contact the billing office and tell that you know that you were overcharged. 

If the manager refuses to hear your complaint, go over their head to the doctor or facility owner. If necessary, file complaints through the Better Business Bureau, Consumer Reports and your state’s Health Department.

Hire an Attorney

Anyone who has experienced an injury or delay in care that resulted in further injury because of an accident caused by another person or group of people, including an employer or healthcare professional, should speak with a personal injury lawyer from a firm like D Chadwick Calvert Law Office

When you’re the victim of these types of incidents, you shouldn’t have to pay for medical care. A personal injury lawyer can help you determine if you have a case and seek the compensation you need to pay your medical bills and cover lost wages and emotional trauma.

Whether you have an outrageously high bill or you’re not healthy or capable enough to work off your debt, you must think outside of the box and use every advantage possible to reduce it. 

Otherwise, medical bills can become an unending source of stress that makes your health even worse. Since the purpose of receiving medical care is to improve your physical state and overall life, why allow medical debt to consume your every thought? Improve your life and health with these five tips.

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