HOW TO REDUCE MEDICAL BILLS
We've all been hit with an unexpected illness, surgery and/or medical condition. Often, health insurance will only pay for part of the expense. And even worse, millions of Americans don't have any health insurance at all. Regardless of what your situation is, if you have accumulated any amount of medical and/or doctor bills, help yourself by negotiating the amount owed with the health care providers! Medical bills loans also help cover the expense of unexpected health costs.

Request a reduction in cost early on
Meaning, ask for a lower price before you get your procedure done, not once the bill arrives. It is possible that surgeons will offer a break on the fee for the surgery they are to perform. In addition, if you are getting a cosmetic/plastic surgery procedure done, they may offer you a 'buy-one-get-one-free' type of deal. Consider plastic surgery loans. Mental therapists may offer a package deal for therapy sessions; like 10 sessions for the price of 8. There is no harm in asking!

Offer to pay cash in advance
According to a 2009 Gallup poll of doctors in the United States, the number one incentive to grant a discount is if they were to receive payment in cash. That being said, request a discount for paying cash up-front.

Research!
You will not be able to bargain unless you know how much something costs. Do your due diligence and educate yourself about costs prior to surgery. You can visit sites like PHP Partners and determine what the cost of medical care in your state is. Another good idea is check out your health insurance carrier's website and see if they provide expected pricing for services and drugs. You may even want to do a search on Google for pricing ideas.

Kiss Some Butt
Almost every doctor office is going to have people or an outside service that handles all of their billing and account collections. Doctors are really not too aware of what goes on with their billing. Find out who the office manager is and explain your situation to them. Try and get as personal with them as possible. I was once able to get a doctor bill reduced by more than 50% by being courteous and friendly with an office coordinator.

Go during the slow time of year
For example, if you are looking to get some type of plastic surgery done, you may want to schedule during the summer. Most plastic surgeries are done during the winter so that by the time summer comes, the recipient will be fully healed and ready to hit the beaches!

You should also offer to take any last minute cancellations that they may receive. Since surgeries are usually scheduled months in advance, doctors would rather perform a surgery for a lower cost than lose out entirely.

Find a professional to advocate for you
Even after paying the fee involved with an advocacy service, you still may be able to save significant money. These professionals know the trade and will likely get you a better deal than you will be able to obtain on your own. But, make sure you do your homework when hiring a 'health care advocate' by making sure they are listed positively with the Better Business Bureau. You may also want to request references.

During these touch economic times in conjunction with the increased cost for medical services, there most definitely is no harm in requesting a discount off of your medical bills. Why not?!

Related Reading:
Dealing with Medical Bills
Organizing Bills
How Not to Pay Your Bills
 


 

 


 

 

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