Bills, Bills, Bills!
Written on March 11, 2014 by Leslie Rott
It’s never a quick call when you need to contact your insurance company.
I recently got a bill for lab work for $925. I had a bit of a heart attack.
My first thought was that I can’t afford to pay that. And my second thought was that I didn’t really owe that.
So over the last few days, I’ve been trying to reach my insurance company to find out what was going on. And I finally did.
For some reason, the hospital had sent me the bills without processing the insurance coverage portion, and therefore billed me for the entire amount.
So my insurance company told me that they had settled the claims and weren’t sure why I’d been billed that much. So they told me I had to call the hospital. Figures no one actually wants to take responsibility for the snafu.
I called the hospital and they went through all the bills. So I do owe for this bill, but not $925.
There were some other bills outstanding. One I owed thirty-eight cents on and another I owed $1.08. They kindly got rid of those charges.
But these places will nickel and dime you to death.
Don’t these people realize that stress exacerbates my illnesses, and that when you send me a bill claiming I owe $925, I’m probably going to freak out about it a little bit?
I also got a bill from the student health center at my old school. So kind of them to think of me.
I contacted them, and they said they had made some mistakes in billing and were re-billing people. This was for medical services from two to three years ago. And I’m not even a student there anymore!
All of our agents are currently assisting other customers…
A familiar refrain.
Whenever you call insurance companies or billing departments, you have to be prepared to give up time you are never going to get back.
And I did.
But it was worth it because I couldn’t afford to pay a bill, especially that I so clearly didn’t actually owe.
But I know there are some people out there who get bills and pay them, without a second thought.
However, advocating for yourself means being savvy and realizing when things are amiss. Granted, I did lose time and sleep over this, but I won’t be bleeding money and that’s the whole point of having insurance.
When I talked to my insurance company and the woman said she wasn’t sure why I was being billed for that amount, I told her that if I did owe that, I wasn’t sure what the purpose was of having insurance, in the first place.
Lately I feel like I owe everyone money. And it’s super stressful. But at least now I can rest easy, that is, until my next doctor’s appointment.