Despite premium insurance, you can experience a surprise medical bill at the end of the treatment. Medical procedures are already a stressful process for the patients and their families; surprise bills can add up to this pressure. Here in this blog, we will discuss some checkpoints to avoid any financial expenses in the future.
- Sometimes all medical expenses are not covered by your insurance companies, which leads to financial costs at the end of the procedure.
- There is no federal law for the protection of the people from surprise bills.
- Double-check from your insurer that the doctor you are going to see is still in the network.
- The estimated cost you got from the healthcare provider will help you in the future if you get any surprise bill.
- Check if there is an error in your medical bill.
- In case, there is no option left, payment of medical bills is compulsory, as it is smarter to search for some financial aid or payment plan.
Primary Cause of a Surprise Bill
Even with the premium insurance, all your medical facilities and expenses are not covered. As a result, you have to face surprise medical bills at the end of the treatment. Every time a patient undergoes any treatment, surgery, or even an ER visit, it is nearly impossible to avoid financial surprises. Recently, the Trump government has passed the law for ending the surprise bill system. According to the revised law, the health industry needs to introduce an improved system for greater transparency.
Surprise medical billing is an old practice that affects millions of people and leads them in a debt position. We are not expecting any reasonable law in the near future to end this practice. We are giving some tips below, in order to avoid these surprise medical bills.
Suggestions for Avoiding Surprise Medical Bills
1. Figure Out What Your Plan Covers
You should have complete knowledge about all the plan’s benefits. Before going for any treatment, confirm the coverage of that medical procedure from your insurer. This is how you can avoid any financial surprise in the future.
2. Double Check Providers Are In-Network
As the provider network changes constantly, it is wise to confirm that the specialist you are going to see is still in the network. You can confirm this from your insurer. It would also be encouraging to record all the conversations and data, which will help you in the future if you face an unexpected bill.
3. Cost Estimates
As most insurers tell the estimated cost for any specific treatment in advance, ask them before going for any procedure. Moreover, third-party applications are also available over the internet, which tells the overall cost for any treatment. After estimating your side’s expense, call the healthcare provider, and ask him about the total cost of the treatment you are going to take. Compare the values; you got from healthcare providers as well as from your research and discuss if there is any significant difference. The estimated cost you got from the healthcare provider will help you in the future if you get any surprise bill.
4. Get Help from the State
Even though there are no federal laws that can protect patients from any surprise medical bills, yet some states have policies for protecting their citizens from such bills. For example, in certain states, patients are protected from the charges of emergency room visits that include out of network doctors. Hence, it is wise to contact the state’s department to check if any lawful assurance can help you avoid surprise bills.
5. Reviewing the Bills
As the billing department of any hospital handles and maintains a bundle of information on a regular basis, hence the chance of billing errors increases. They may have used wrong insurance information, charged you for the services you never got, or might have entered wrong dates. Continuously check the doctor’s visit expenses cautiously and identify if there is any inconsistency.
Filing an Appeal
Medical bills often come with the instruction about filing an appeal. If you see any irregularity, you can file a formal complaint of being excessively charged by your insurance company. At any point, you have the right to question the doctor’s visit expense with your insurer. Brief your healthcare provider about the circumstance and solicit them not to send any bills in collections. Although they are not bound to do this, you can still request someone to assist you in solving your dispute.
6. Go for a Payment plan
If all of the above tricks and strategies failed to work, and it is crystal clear that the bill is valid and you need to pay for the charges, then at that point, it is smarter to search for some money related guide or installment plan. In most cases, the billing department has installment plans with little to zero interest that can easily assist you in paying your doctor’s visit expenses.
Medical procedures themselves are an upsetting experience for patients and their families. An unexpected financial expense can increase their stress. While the government has no timeline for making the rules to end these surprise expenses, yet they can simply be avoided by following the checks listed above.
For any further queries, you can book an online consultation at one of our recommended platforms, “Complete Medical Wellness”.