How to Catch Medical Billing Errors
One in 10 medical bills contains a claims error, according to a study conducted by the American Medical Association. Another study done by the Access Project, a Boston-based health care advocacy group, found billing errors occur in up to 80 percent of cases. While the actual frequency of billing errors may not be precisely known, it is important to make sure that it doesn’t happen to you. Policy holders who don't promptly and thoroughly review their invoices could face problems if errors exist.
The New York State Attorney General operates a help line to assist patients with billing problems. Last year, the AG’s helpline returned nearly $300,000 to consumers who were affected by improper billing. This included $21,000 in cases where providers entered a wrong amount or billing code, $27,000 in cases where providers failed to submit a claim to the insurance company, and more than $3,000 in cases of improper late fees, finance charges or missed appointment fees.
Here are a few tips for catching common billing errors:
Look at the bills as soon as you receive them. The longer you wait, the harder it may be to fix an error.
If one is not provided, ask your provider for a detailed bill for a visit or procedure so that you can see the complete cost breakdown to assist you in finding errors.
Make sure your insurance benefits match the charges from the healthcare provider. There is a chance you were billed for something that should have been covered by your health care plan.
Contact the Indiana attorneys at the Sweeney Law Firm for information on medical malpractice, nursing home abuse or personal injury matters.