How To Reduce Your Medical Bills
2/3 of the people filing for bankruptcy
often listed medical bills as the top reason
for their financial insolvency. Even with
health insurance, it is no guarantee due to
the rising cost of out-of-pocket expenses
and inadequate health insurance protection.
We shop around for laser eye surgery and
stomach stapling. It does not make any sense
for us to go into a doctors office without
any idea of how much a procedure is going to
cost. And it especially makes no sense if
you are uninsured and paying for the
procedure directly out of your own pocket.
How do I reduce my medical debt after I
received a bill?
Before negotiating to reduce your medical
bill, ask for an itemized statement. Double
billing on a hospital bill is common. Look
out for the following common double billing
1. Check to make sure that you are not
double billed for a hospital room and its
standard amenities like a toothbrush or
2. Keep an eye out for kits or
trays in your itemized medical bill.
Check them against the individual charges
for specific surgical instruments.
It is not unusual to get a 30%
discount from just going through your
itemized hospital bill to make sure that you
are billed properly for the items that you
did use during your stay.
How to negotiate a reduction on your
However, hospitals generally do not
want to go through your itemized hospital
bill by individual charges. Instead, they
prefer to give a percentage discount off the
hospital bill. Cash paying patients can get
up to a 40% reduction off the inflated
medical bill simply by asking.
Ask the billing department
“Are you authorized to give me a discount
for this medical bill?”
A. If the answer yes,
follow up with “What kind of discount
can you give me?”
B. Then ask “Who is
authorized to give me a bigger
C. Follow by “Can I get
a bigger discount for paying with
cash?” If you do not have cash, you can
charge it to your credit card. But
don’t charge it if you cannot pay off
the balance when your credit card bill
is due. It would be stupid to pay
finance charges that are larger than the
amount you will be saving.
D. If you can afford
to, ask “Is there a discount for paying
my medical bill in full?” Most billing
representatives assume that you will be
paying installments on a medical bill.
If you can afford to pay the entire bill
in full, ask for a discount for prompt
2. If the answer is no,
then ask “Who is authorized to give me a
discount?” Then ask to speak to that
person. Follow with Questions A-D from