BILLS FROM PROVIDERS
Many of us receive bills, otherwise known as statements, in the mail from our medical providers after our insurance is processed and provider was paid. It is the responsibility of the provider’s office to provide you a statement to identify what you are financial responsible for.
We all know that statements can be confusing to identify what needs to be paid, what was previously paid and when it is due. Statements should easily identify the amount due, services received and dates of service.
Most medical providers will send statements one per month to make it easier for you to understand what is due and to ensure that your account ‘ages’ properly. ‘Aging’ can defined as current or past due.
If you have not paid your bill within the current statement period and you receive another statement, you may be considered past due. Dependent on the provider’s policies, they may send letters or follow up phone calls to let you know your account is past due. In most cases, the providers will try to set up a mutually agreeable payment plan with you. If you do fail to respond to requests, you may be sent to a collection agency and it may negatively affect your credit score.
PAYING YOUR BILL
Most medical providers may also have the option to pay your bill online. In some cases, you may need to set up online billing by calling your provider’s office.
In addition, most statements include a ‘coupon’ or tear off paper to include with your payment, should you mail it in. The coupon may also include a place for a change in insurance or address. If you have had any changes in the last month, make sure to complete the form and sent it back. Any wrong address may cause problems with getting the statement to you – and affect the aging on your account.
Still confused? Don’t be afraid to call your medical provider’s office and ask questions about your financial responsibility. It’s your right.