Jump to content

Emergency room help


remixfan
 Share

Recommended Posts

Hello, I thought maybe someone here has dealt with this before, and I need help.

I recently visited the hospital to look for a particular office where I was supposed to meet with a counselor for medication and an evaluation.

I was directed to an office down halls and I was told it was where I needed to go.

I didn't think anything was out of the ordinary, but when I got my information setup I waited for about 30 minutes and someone called me into the room. it was there that I found out that it was not where I was supposed to be and that I should go somewhere else for what i needed.

Now a few weeks later I get a bill in the mail for an emergency room visit and they expect me to pay 1200 dollars! I did not receive any sort of service that I'm aware of, and they directed me to the wrong place (emergency room!)

What can I do? would I be able to dispute this somehow?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you are insured with medical insurance (either by yourself, a spouse, or parent), tell them and call your insurance agency and tell them what happened. It could also have been a mistake on the hospital's part, and I would talk to a secretary at the hospital as well (bring the bill, of course, and if you remember the person who told you where to go, find them as well).

Unfortunately, people try to scam their insurance agency all the time, so they are very likely going to be skeptical and if may be difficult to get this taken care of. Good luck.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you have health insurance, then you definitely have some options to dispute the charges. For starters, if you do have insurance, then you shouldn't be the one to actually see any bill whatsoever (the insurance company is supposed to be directly billed); that alone indicates that some mistake was made.

Anyway, as Sengin said, your first step would be to call your insurance company and explain to them the situation. Try to be clear that you never received any medical service from the ER. Additionally, try to get the bill itemized if you can--this may require you to call the hospital itself.

If you don't have insurance, then I think your options would be more limited. If that's the case, then you'll need to call the hospital directly, probably ask for an itemized bill, and then take it from there. Sorry about that, and good luck. KF

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Here's what you should probably do. First, contact the hospital financial office (or whoever you are supposed to pay the bill to) and explain what happened. See if they are willing to take care of the problem. If that doesn't work, you should hire a lawyer (or, since the amount is only $1200, you can take it to a small claims court).

By the way, what precisely are they trying to charge you for? In other words, what service does the bill allege that you received? Because if you spent time with a doctor who did some procedures on you before it was discovered that you were in the wrong place, though you may get the bill reduced, you're probably going to have to pay for the doctor's time.

Actually, small claims court is probably a good idea here if it comes to litigation. All you have to show is that, by a preponderance of the evidence (50.00001%+ of the evidence is on your side)you were the innocent party and got screwed in this instance by the hospital. Well anyway, I'm interested to see how this turns out. If you're willing to, keep us updated.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Here's what you should probably do. First, contact the hospital financial office (or whoever you are supposed to pay the bill to) and explain what happened. See if they are willing to take care of the problem. If that doesn't work, you should hire a lawyer (or, since the amount is only $1200, you can take it to a small claims court).

By the way, what precisely are they trying to charge you for? In other words, what service does the bill allege that you received? Because if you spent time with a doctor who did some procedures on you before it was discovered that you were in the wrong place, though you may get the bill reduced, you're probably going to have to pay for the doctor's time.

Actually, small claims court is probably a good idea here if it comes to litigation. All you have to show is that, by a preponderance of the evidence (50.00001%+ of the evidence is on your side)you were the innocent party and got screwed in this instance by the hospital. Well anyway, I'm interested to see how this turns out. If you're willing to, keep us updated.

And to go along with what XZero said, if you make a call to them, make sure to have records of when you call them. And if necessary record the call.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Before you start asking them to take things off your bill, you want to first ask them to detail exactly what you're being charged for aside from what the bill tells you. Write it down. This way, you know what their position is and can explain to them your situation based on that.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd definitely follow the advice of the others in terms of having someone overturn that bullshit bill. With whomever you talk at the hospital's business office, you definitely want to stress that you received absolutely no services.

I do have another option you may be interested in, but I'd only explore it if all other options are exhausted, because I believe going forward with an application for charity process means you'd implicitly acknowledge that you were justifiably charged, which you don't want to do.

Anyway, most (non-profit) hospitals have an application for charity process, particularly for the uninsured. If said application was approved, the hospital would elect to write off some, most or all of the charges. As far as initiating the process, don't worry if you've received the bill a while ago or recently; don't worry if the bill has gone to collections; just call the hospital and get started with the process.

You would need to call the hospital's billing department to ask whether they have the application for charity process and take down the info they give. All in all, you'd need your hospital account #, which should be on the bill, the proper address to mail your application to, as well as the fax # and name of the person in the billing department who handles charity applications.

IIRC, they'll send you a paper application where you fill out the required info. You'd also need to provide a few things in a supplemental letter stating your situation, including your name, account # with the hospital, Social Security #, the nature of the charges (and, in your case, that you're disputing them since you received no services), your current/recent employment status, your last year's income (add up your W2s), and your projected income for this year. If you don't have exact figures for your previous year's income handy, provide a guesstimate and note that you're comfortable with them looking into it further in case your dollar figures are off. You'd then fax that letter to the appropriate fax #, also writing ATTN: WHOMEVER on the letter as well.

Then you'd periodically call in and check on the status of the application. Usually, they'll decide in at most 2 weeks on what they'll do. If you're approved, you'll either get a new bill mailed to you, or they'll wipe the slate clean.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The world outside Canada just got a little scarier for me... This is a mistake so inane but you people are talking about having to go through court to settle fix it?

I sure hope you get this solved and straightened out without any trouble at all or my faith in humanity is going to die a little.

Couldn't you just point to some records as to what you were supposed to be there for? Like an appointment book or something?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think people are going a little overboard, although I know it's all well-intentioned. I wouldn't start freaking out until AFTER you've contacted them about it and then been told "Screw you, we're gonna make you pay it." More likely than not, you'll call, say "Hey, I got this wacky bill," and they'll say "Oops, sorry, we'll fix it."

That's pretty much what happened when my previous university sent me a bill for a semester during which I did not attend: I rang them up, said WTF, and they told me to disregard it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Based on the medical crap a friend has been going through over the last few months, to rectify your problem, DON'T CALL THEM (or if you do be ready to drive over there). Go to their billing office in person and don't leave until they fix the problem. Hospital billing offices have no problem lying to you over the phone, as they did to my friend. After they tried to screw him over he zipped over there in his car and bitched at them in person and stayed put until they fixed their billing errors. Just make sure you have your information straight beforehand.

[shrug] Good luck with whatever happens.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

For the record, recording phone calls without the knowledge/permission of all involved parties is illegal as hell.

Oh this I know, but I think that it should be possible to just give off that same lil disclaimer that most places give when you call them when they say that this call may be monitored. If they can record when you call them then the same rule should be applied.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer, and am not qualified to give legal advice. That being said, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Telephone_recording_laws#United_States, shows that depending on where you live, a notification that you are recording the message may not be enough. I hope this helps and that the situation is resolved quickly.

tldr, but this is wrong even according to the Wikipedia article. The most you have to do is notify the other parties on the line that you intend to record the call and ensure you have their permission to do so, passing on said notification and permission-requesting to all new parties who join the conversation.

I am not schooled in law, but having lived in one of those twelve states listed in the article this is exactly how it works on the other end: they say the following call will/may be recorded and that if I don't want to be recorded that I should hang up. A private citizen has just as much right to do this as a corporation.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...