Dispute Medical Billing Errors and Reduce Your Medical Bill Costs

 
 

Medical Billing FAQs

Should I put medical bills on a credit card?

If you can pay off the balance of the credit cards without creating a financial hardship on yourself, credit card may be an option. However, if you cannot pay off the debt promptly, be aware that medical debt is often given more leeway on credit reports than regular consumer debt. Once a medical bill goes on a credit card, it becomes consumer debt and may have a more negative impact on your credit rating.

How do I check for errors on my bill?

The best place to located errors is on a copy of your super bill. This is a line item detail of the services and products you received while visiting your healthcare provider. It can be difficult to interpret, but the super bill is the most complete documentation of the care you received. If you have any questions, or feel like there may be errors, contact the provider's billing office.

Who are patient advocates?

Patient advocates are people who speak for patients in instances where the patients lack the subject matter knowledge or are otherwise unable to communicate without assistance. These professionals can be especially helpful when negotiating medical bills. For a small fee, some patient advocates offer services to review medical bills and negotiate with providers on your behalf.

What are SOPs?

Standard operating practices, or SOPs, define what services and products are provided given a patientís condition. Sometimes, this means you are billed for services you may not have received because those who did the billing assumed you received them based on the doctorís notes. So, look over your medical bills to ensure you were not overcharged for services you never received.

If a health care provider tells you that your policy covers more than it actually does, and then later bills you for a much larger amount, should you still have to pay?

When it comes to the coverage that your health insurance policy provides, the only way a provider could know the scope of your specific health plan and what it pays for is if they called your insurance company for pre-authorization or to verify coverage. Providers are required by law to charge the same amount of money for the same services. So what they charge you for a 15 minute office visit has to be the same as what they charge another patient for a 15 minute office visit. The difference is the amount that you will each have to pay based on your policy and coverage. You can always negotiate with your provider. The best bet in a situation like this is to start by call your providers billing office. Tell them about the situation and see if they would be willing to discount your bill. You insurance company is a good resource as well.

Are medical bills tax deductible?

We're not accountants, so be sure to check with your CPA, but most medical treatments, services and prescriptions that you pay for can be claimed if you itemize your deductions. The amount that you can deduct must exceed 7.5% of your adjusted gross income (AGI).

 

 
 

 

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