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Medical billing problem

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by Smallpotatoes, Jun 23, 2013.

  1. Smallpotatoes

    Smallpotatoes Well-Known Member

    This isn't a huge problem, just a rather annoying one.
    With my insurance company, the co-pays are $25 for primary care $50 for a specialist and $150 for emergency room visits.
    The last few times I've visited my primary care doctor, I paid my $25 only to receive another bill for $25 a few weeks later. I called my insurance company and asked if the co-pays had gone up. They told me they didn't. I asked if there might be any reason why I owed an additional $25. They didn't know and said I should call my doctor.
    I called the billing company and asked them about it. I told them that according to my records, I did in fact pay the $25. They told me it was a mistake and I didn't owe any more.
    At the beginning of this month, I visited a dermatologist for a skin check. I paid the $50 specialist co-pay. Today, I received a bill from his office (and a different billing company) for $50. The bill stated that the total cost of the visit was $150 and my insurance company paid $100. I'm curious why I owe another $50. I'll call on Monday and ask but I'm wondering why this has happened every time I've seen a doctor in the last year or so.
    Even if I don't owe anything more, I really don't want to go through this every time I see a doctor. It makes me wonder if they do this thinking most people will just pay the extra $25 or $50 rather than contest it.
     
  2. jackfinarelli

    jackfinarelli Member


    I don't know if they do this because they think people will just pay the extra money and not contest the bill because that would require mind-reading skills - - and I flunked that course in college.

    I do believe that if some people pay the extra fee - either because they do not pay close attention to the billing details or because they are not interested in contesting the "small" extra charge - the billing companies and the doctors are not highly motivated to find a way to assure it never happens again.
     
  3. Boom_70

    Boom_70 Well-Known Member

    It's their mistake. Why should you waste your time trying to resolve? When it's happened to me I disregard until they call
    and then I calmly explain that I paid my fee while at office and I have cancelled check to prove it.
     
  4. three_bags_full

    three_bags_full Well-Known Member

    I cannot tell you how much I do not miss dealing with insurance companies.
     
  5. After the co-pay, don't you have to pay a certain percentage?
     
  6. BTExpress

    BTExpress Well-Known Member

    After I bought some lenses and frames, I got a letter saying something to the effect that "Upon further review, the insurance company should not have paid X, but X minus Y. Therefore, you owe Y to make up the difference.."

    I simply wrote a letter back saying, "My choice of lenses and frames were based on the out-of-pocket cost presented to me at the time of my purchase. Had those costs been higher, I likely would have made a difference choice. The mistake was made on YOUR end, and one of YOUR employees is going to have to make up the difference."

    Never heard back from them.
     
  7. EStreetJoe

    EStreetJoe Well-Known Member

    As to why it's happened every time you see the doctor, other than carelessness on the part of your doctors' offices not properly crediting your account the co-pay you paid at the time of service I don't have an answer. Just call, politely tell them you made your co-pay at the time of service, have the receipt from them to prove it, and you believe that the bill is an error and see what their response is.
     
  8. Boom_70

    Boom_70 Well-Known Member

    Why? Let them track you down.
     
  9. Smallpotatoes

    Smallpotatoes Well-Known Member

    Not for routine office visits.
    I've also noticed this started happening after I began paying the co-pays with a debit card as opposed to cash or check.
     
  10. SoCalDude

    SoCalDude Active Member

    Aetna used to do that all the time. Double charges until you question them, then they say, Oh, it was a mistake, disregard. Now many people don't question them.
    Became something you just have to deal with as part of your everyday life.
     
  11. EStreetJoe

    EStreetJoe Well-Known Member

    If it's not an HMO and your insurance company sends you an EOB detailing the visit charges, that should show that you made your co-pay at the time of the visit.

    If it continues to happen, bypass the receptionist and billing department and go right to the office manager for the doctor. Tell her what's been happening and that you're a very unhappy patient. That should fix the problem as the issue is either with the receptionist not reflecting the payment on the statement the billing department gets or the billing department missing the notation the payment was made.
     
  12. Sam Mills 51

    Sam Mills 51 Active Member

    Check the EOB.
     
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