Showing posts with label Hospital. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Hospital. Show all posts

Thursday, January 16, 2014

More Than You Can Chew: Tips for Paying Medical Bills

A large medical or dental bill that is more than you can chew is so discouraging. When presented with a super-sized medical bill, it is possible to negotiate with the hospital, doctor, or dentist providing services. The results may be instant, or take some time to achieve, but do not despair. Here are tips for paying medical bills and keeping on top of your finances when the unexpected occurs.

Ask for a Discount Before Receiving a Medical Bill

Ask the doctor, hospital, dentist, or oral surgeon for a discount prior to the service if possible. Tell the provider that you do not have health or dental insurance, or any relevant financial circumstances. For example, if unemployed, living on a small fixed income, or anything else that affects the ability to pay, discuss this before services are rendered. Many providers and health care facilities offer financial services assistance to those in need. Unfortunately, unless the patient informs his or her doctor or institution about financial circumstances, the provider bills without consideration.

Offer to Settle the Outstanding Bill Immediately

When requesting a discount for services, do not accept the provider's initial rejection as the final word. The doctor or dentist needs office cash flow. Offer to pay the debt in full, at the reduced price offered, immediately. Pay the bill with a cashier's check or in cash, immediately after offering to pay the discounted rate. Write “paid in full” on a cashier's check and request a receive stating that the debt is paid when settling in cash.

How to Pay Older Medical Bills

Sometimes the patient's financial condition changes quickly, and he or she may become unemployed shortly after receiving expensive medical or dental services. It is still possible to ask the provider or hospital for a discount. In this instance, contact the doctor, dentist, hospital, or medical facility as quickly as possible to discuss the circumstances. If months have passed since the services were provided, look up the fair price for the services received. Use this information to negotiate a discount. Insurance companies use similar information to negotiate a better price on their subscribers' services.

Arrange a Payment Plan

Occasionally, a doctor, dentist, or hospital will demand payment in full. In this scenario, politely explain your financial circumstances, and request a payment plan. Never provide a credit card or offer to pay the amount owed on a credit card. This action subjects the financially-strapped individual to interest charges required to finance the medical bill. Instead, offer an affordable payment amount. Then, make the payments as agreed.

Pay as Agreed

When offering the provider a discount, or requesting a payment plan over a certain period of months or years, keep your word. Never offer a payment plan that is more than you can afford because this puts personal credit and ultimate settlement of the debt at risk. To make payments on a payment plan as agreed, consider writing checks for each month's payment in advance. Place each check into an addressed envelope, then place each ready to send payment in a calendar file.

Emergency Medical Bills

In some situations, such as an emergency, it is impossible to ask for discounted services. For example, an individual is in a car accident, and an emergency vehicle or ambulance takes him to the hospital to receive urgent care. In such an instance, the individual or his family should contact a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. Jeffery C. Metler, who has had experience in the field says medical bills, rehabilitation services, lost wages, and the cost to repair a vehicle can all be payed with the help of a personal injury attorney. Never interact with the at-fault driver's insurance company without the benefit of a personal injury attorney on your side.

When it comes to your health, you need the best care possible, and often it comes at a steep price. Don't let your current situation dictate your health. Take action and come up with a way to pay off the debt yourself. Use these tips to get started and improve your situation today.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Travel Nurses A Unique Specialty In A Medical Career

Travel nursing is a concept in the field of nursing that came about as a remedy to the shortage of nurses across various health institutions. What happens is that some segments of the medical sector sometimes provide nurses who are able to travel and work in various places that require them to fill temporary nursing positions. The nurses charged with these kinds of duties are the ones referred to as travel nurses. The nursing positions they go to fill are mostly in hospitals that are outside the area in which they work or reside. Despite the fact that the term travel nursing is regularly associated specifically with the nursing profession, the term is also used to refer to a wide range of healthcare positions, which could include physical therapy, speech-language pathology, occupational therapy, dentists or even doctors.

The requirements for travel nurses to meet include; they must have a minimum of 1 year of experience with a year being preferred in their particular specialty. They must also have a license in the state of which they have employment in. The states board of nursing usually grants this.

Travel nurses may at times receive some level of orientation when they reach the new hospitals that they are to work in, it is however minimal and in most cases, they receive no orientation at all. Travel nurses are required to have a high level of experience and knowledge. They are required to have the mental and physical capability to deal and adapt with their new environments while still being able to perform their duties.

Travel nurses play a crucial role and especially in hospitals where their expertises are in need. They help to offer services to patients who would have to wait in long queues or even days if they were not there. Their need and role cannot be underestimated in the medical sector.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Health Scares to Watch For When Your Over 50

A medical student checking blood pressure usin...
A medical student checking blood pressure using a sphygmomanometer and stethoscope. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
As you get older there are more and more health concerns that you need to be aware of. It seems that the magic age averages out around the fifty year mark somehow. One minute you do not have a care in the world and the next thing you know you are getting warnings on just about every possible catastrophic event that you can think of. 

I remember when the doctor started telling me I had to get a flu shot. In prior years it was offered to me and a suggestion was made but then one day it was not an offer but a very strong insistence. When you are younger and visit the doctor they get your height, weight, and check your blood pressure. But when you get to be fifty and over they demand much more at your early checkup as well. I get chest x-rays, bone density tests, a full blood work screening, and an EKG. I am instructed to get my eyes examined, my mammogram, well woman check up, and if I actually have an ailment at this time I am sent to whatever specialist is called for

I am very thankful that my doctor is so thorough, do not get me wrong. I would rather be safe than sorry. It sure changes the way you look at life and suddenly you become your Great-Aunt Tilly who discusses every possible complication of every possible ailment. I have decided I do not want to be my Great-Aunt Tilly but I also do not want to be in the dark about possible symptoms and what they mean either. 

Visi├│n y embarazo - Hospital Oftalmol├│gico USP...
 (Photo credit: USP Hospitales)

All of us over fifty should be aware of the signs of more serious conditions without living in fear and having it be the predominant topic at the dinner table as well. Some of the things that I am acutely aware of just because they run in my family are diabetes, heart disease, strokes, and high blood pressure. There are other risks such as cancer, chronic lower respiratory diseases, and Alzheimer’s. All these things I have just listed are at the top of the charts for those over fifty and all of them are things we should all be taking precautions about in our lives. 

Diabetes is a real concern for those of us who are older since even if it does not run in your family you are still at risk. If your diet is poor and you are over weight then you are at risk. Staying slim, not eating too many sweets, and exercising are excellent ways to prevent getting diabetes 2. Two close family members have diabetes 2, one of them has taken steps to lose weight and eat right and is being treated predominantly by pills. The other family member is over weight and does not eat like they should and have to use insulin. My understanding about this disease is that it is no respecter of persons. It deteriorates everything in your body much quicker than before and it cuts your life expectancy down quite a bit. 

Blood Pressure 365.364
Blood Pressure  (Photo credit: loonyhiker)

Blood pressure is another one that I have had a lot of experience with as well. I myself have started to have high blood pressure in the past few years. They are not even sure what causes high blood pressure. Being over-weight, being under a great deal of stress, certain medications, and heredity are a few ideas but the main thing you can do is to stay in the best shape you can and keep your blood pressure under control. Monitoring your blood pressure is very important. Some of the signs are headaches, getting flushed and feeling extremely hot, a rapid or slower heart beat can also be a sign that something is wrong. The main thing is to monitor your blood pressure, not just when you go to the doctor once a year either. If it gets out of control it can kill you, this is where heart attacks and strokes come in to play. 

My family has a history of blocked arteries or “hardening of the arteries” as it used to be called. Thus the blood flow is cut off from going in or coming out of your heart and creating a heart attack scenario. Because I know the family history of this disease I started early having stress tests and going to my mother’s cardiologist. I have seen so much suffering and surgery related to this disease that I definitely wanted to stay ahead of this one. If you have a family history or have any unusual shortness of breath, chest pains, or neck pain then you need to go have it checked out. They have so many wonderful procedures today to get the arteries unblocked before it leads to a heart attack that it is not worth waiting. This is another disease that calls for right eating and exercise. I am pretty sure that is a big key in the prevention of most diseases! 

English: Pensacola, FL, July 13, 2005 - A memb...
 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Strokes are something that everyone over fifty should be very aware of, even when you live through one it is often so very difficult to ever get back to a completely normal life. Often you can be left without your speech, ability to walk, and the use of a whole side of your body. I read an article the other day that if someone starts talking crazy you should have them repeat a simple sentence, lift their arms over their head, or simply stick out their tongue. If you are alone and you are feeling strange then try sticking out your own tongue or lifting your arms, if you cannot do these simple things then you need to seek help right away. If you feel confused or disoriented then let someone know! A stroke is nothing to play around with. 

Cancer is not often diagnosed quickly enough but there are precautions you can take. For women the simplest step to take is having yearly mammograms and well women exams. For men it is prostrate exams. Those things we can all do with ease. I have a friend who is adamant about yearly exams now because she skipped one year in getting hers and now she has breast cancer. Just one year can make a big difference. It is not painful and it could save your life. Do what you can to ensure that you do not have to go through the chemo, radiation, medications, and even the possible event of death. Keeping on top of your yearly exams and taking care of yourself is the greatest gift you can give to your family. 

Dreary Doctor's Office
Doctor's Office (Photo credit: TimmyGUNZ)

Alzheimer’s is another big killer that seems to be on the rise in these past few years. This is another one that they are not certain about the cause. It was said to be hereditary but lately I have seen that this is not always the case. Many people are advocating keeping active physically and mentally, others talk about diet and packaged foods and preservatives. They are finding out new things in research as we speak but none to date that tell us how to fight this terrifying villain that is Alzheimer’s. I have seen those I knew seem to vanish right before my eyes. It is not just the memory loss but their bodies begin to deteriorate as well. The brain is not communicating with the body correctly and things begin to fail. This is a frightening disease not only because of what it can do but because we do not know much about it. We need to learn so much more about Alzheimer’s and I hope it is soon. 

The best thing you can do for yourself and your family is to take preventative steps and be aggressive in that prevention. Go for your annual physicals, eat right, exercise, get into less stressful environments, and know your family history so that you can inform your doctor so that they can be looking for possible problems. Do not just sit in the dark and wait for something to happen but be alert and aware and on top of your health. 

Author Bio: 

Ken Myers is the founder of & has learned over the years the importance of focusing on what the customer is looking for and literally serving it to them. He doesn't try to create a need, instead he tries to satisfy the existing demand for information on products and services.

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