Despite having health insurance, it is still possible to rack up serious medical bills. Your insurance may have a deductible or may not cover certain procedures and necessary treatments. Like any debt, medical debt can affect your credit rating if it's not paid promptly. Declaring bankruptcy may create even more complications. However, there are ways to make that debt more manageable.
Talk to the hospital's billing department:
Many people aren't aware that some hospitals are willing to negotiate or work with their patients regarding their bills. Depending on your income and circumstances, they may cover the entire bill or lower it substantially. Some hospitals may offer a discount if you agree to pay the whole thing at once within a certain number of days. Some may also offer payment programs at a reduced interest rate. Though there is no harm in asking for accommodation, don't be surprised if they don't offer any help. Not all hospitals offer any assistance even for low-income patients.
Double-check your bill:
Though the bill may not arrive until several weeks after your procedure, it's important to check out every item for which you are billed. Make sure that you have received all the procedures and medications listed. If you have any questions about some of the terminology, contact the hospital's billing department. Don't pay for anything on your bill that you did not receive. Also, if you have insurance, make sure that they are covering all eligible costs. While you are disputing the bill, try to keep a check on it to make sure it is not sent to collections. If the bill is sent to a collection agency anyway, then work directly with the agency to get the situation resolved.
Set up financing:
After you have talked to the hospital, made sure you are being charged correctly and you still have a large bill to pay, contact a lending company that specializes in medical bill financing. Loans are often available for short-term and long-term financing depending on the size of your debt. If you know you will need a procedure in the future, you can also set up financing in advance. This is especially helpful for elective procedures such as cosmetic surgery or laser eye surgery.
While medical bills can be expensive, there are ways to get help with paying them. After making sure you are being correctly charged and the charges are the lowest amount possible for your situation, consider having the debt financed to keep the payments manageable and get that bill paid off as soon as possible. That way, you don't have to file bankruptcy or risk your credit. Contact a business, such as Support 4 America LLC, for more information.