When The Medical Bills Arrive

Some of the things that make me shake my head about all this ongoing heart condition issue revolves around the financials.

When I was in the Emergency Room and everyone thought it was a novelty that I could tell them I was going into Ventricular Tachycardia before the EKG picked it up, one Cardiologist had to go grab another one to show him what he just saw me do. This new cardiologist introduced himself, shook my hand, sat in the room for about 5 minutes to see me predict my own heart arrhythmia, left, and then sent me a bill for $320 for a “consultation”.

Four nights in the hospital… $220,000 was billed to my insurance. No, that did not include the open heart surgery. That was just for the privilege of being woke up every 2 hours in a hospital room and my fill of Tapioca pudding.

Fortunately, I have very good medical insurance. It did not save me from paying nearly $6,000 out of pocket, but it did save me from being charged nearly half a million after all was said and done.

Now, every time I have another procedure done, they get me all setup with their “pre-registration” several days before the operation. The day before, they call and have “new information” regarding your procedure that they urgently need to discuss with you. This “Urgent news”??? They have already calculated how much your insurance is going to pay and they spring on you that it is going to cost you $4,300 out of pocket and that they would like a payment NOW. Because having a heart condition and on operation to help fix that operation clearly means to call the patient the day before and try to give them another heart attack!

For the record, they are never correct in their estimates. They are so far off in their estimates that by the time you get the bill, that $4,300 is $1,200.

I went in for one procedure. I got the explanation of benefits afterward. My provider charged $7,600 to the insurance. The Insurance stated that they had an already agreed upon rate of $17,000 but they were only going to cover $12,700 of it meaning I would have to pay the remaining (You guessed it) $4,300. I am still trying to figure out how the insurance company decided that no, the $7,600 was not a big enough bill, we agreed to $17,000.

Lastly, my favorite part of all this insurance nonsense. I get a letter from my insurance a few months after the open heart surgery wanting to know if it was due to a work related injury, auto accident, etc. so they can go after someone else for the money. I called them up and asked them to review my records while I was on the phone. They saw I had a heart attack and a double by-pass and still had the nerve to ask if it was due to someone else.

So, as always friends, avoid dealing with this sort of stupidity and stress and just stay healthy!

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