Are you feeling overwhelmed by medical debt or hospital bills? If so, you are not alone. 137 million Americans They suffer from medical debt.
Even a simple procedure or unexpected hospital visit can be costly in the long run. Because you may have other debts (such as credit cards or student loans), medical bills tend to be pushed to the bottom of the priority list.
But it’s possible to negotiate medical bills for less than you owe, even after insurance pays for its share!
If you’re trying to negotiate your medical bills for less than you owe, you have two basic options:
- Negotiate your invoices before treatment.
- Negotiate your invoices after treatment.
Let’s take a deeper look at how to negotiate your medical bills for a much lower amount than you owe both before and after treatment. I’ll also be sharing tips to help you have more success during the negotiation process as well as a script you can use when contacting billing companies!
How to negotiate medical bills before treatment
When it comes to getting better Price On hospital bills or medical bills, you will need to negotiate prices before you or a loved one receives treatment. This is ideal for elective procedures or even childbirth.
Do these three things before Treatment to help reduce the cost of medical bills.
1. Find someone within the network.
One of the most important steps you can take when it comes to paying less for medical bills is to use your insurance website to find an in-network doctor. This could save you thousands!
If you are having surgery, be sure to also ask any doctor you see to also be in network. Out-of-network fees can add up quickly.
2. Shop for a doctor beforehand.
One smart thing you can do before treatment is to find a doctor. This also applies to simple urgent care visits!
Simply call your clinic or doctor’s office and ask them about their prices. You can also provide your insurance information in advance so you have a good idea of how much you will owe.
By shopping around for a doctor in advance, you’ll be able to not only find a doctor or clinic that works for you, but one that fits your budget!
3. Negotiating with the doctor or office manager.
You can also negotiate your medical bills and rates with the office manager before starting treatment. For example, if you plan to have a child, you can meet with your doctor’s billing officer and negotiate a payment plan or option to pay in full.
Negotiating with your billing office or office manager doesn’t have to be intimidating! Ultimately, these professionals want to get paid. They are willing to work with you to ensure they get paid.
Check out the tips at the end of the article how To negotiate properly.
How to negotiate medical bills for less than you owe after treatment
Yes, you can negotiate your medical bills for less than the amount you owe even after insurance starts.
This is it great News for people who have high or little savings. When it comes to negotiating medical bills after receiving treatment, you have 4 options available to you.
1. Double-check that all your invoices are accurate.
No one is perfect, especially your insurance company or medical billing department. Request an itemized receipt or EOB (Explanation of Benefits) before You pay your medical bills. Check every invoice, receipt, and EOB for anything unusual.
It is not uncommon to find that you have been double-charged on your receipts. You will need to call and bring this matter to the office manager’s attention. They should be able to fix the problem quickly and send you an updated invoice and itemized receipt.
2. Request payment in full debit.
The easiest way to get a discount after The remedy is to offer to pay the bill in full. If you have money in your bank account and can cover all (or most of) the bill, you have significant leverage to lower your bill.
Here’s the truth: These medical offices want their money now. They are willing to offer a discount to get their money’s worth today!
Here are the exact steps you can take to request full debit payment.
Do the math before calling.
Before you call to pay your bill, do the math to figure out what you’d like to pay. For example, most places are willing to offer you a 20% discount on your bill. But it doesn’t hurt to ask for a bigger discount (I personally got up to 40% off a medical bill after insurance paid its share!).
Let’s pretend you have a $1,000 medical bill. To calculate the 35% discount, you multiply the balance by 0.35. Then subtract this amount from the original invoice.
$1000 x 0.35 = $350 (discounted amount)
$1000 – $350 = $650 (the full amount you will pay)
Now when you call, you can tell them you are willing to pay $650 today Pay the bill in full. That’s 35% off! Benefits of doing mathematics before What you’re calling is that you’re making sure you get as much of a discount as possible. It can be difficult to do the math while you’re on the phone with the billing department.
Use this script when you call to negotiate your medical bill.
If you’re having difficulty with what to say, here’s an easy script to have on hand when calling your billing department:
“Hi, I’m calling about my bill. I see here that the balance is $____, but I can pay you $____ today and settle the bill with a balance of $0.”
I have personally used this program and called about 10 places in total and only had 2 places refuse to settle.
In terms of supply amount: The higher the bill, the more discount you can get. We have been able to cut about 25% to 40% off most of our medical bills. I would start by offering 40%-50% of the bill and see what they can do. I even had one person stop me and speak to her manager. When they stopped me, they gave me the highest discount they could offer.
Finally, get the confirmation number.
Once you have paid (which can be done over the phone), make sure you get a confirmation number to pay the bill. If a confirmation number is not available, get the name and phone number of the person you spoke with. You may also request that a written receipt or invoice be sent to you before you pay your bill. You’ll need to make sure the person you’re talking to sets your remaining balance at $0.
3. Set up a payment plan.
If you don’t have enough money to negotiate your entire bill, you can set up a payment plan with the hospital or medical company. The interest rate for these types of payments is usually 0% which is great! Just make sure you get everything in writing and keep up with your payments.
4. Ask about the financial aid program.
Most hospitals have financial assistance programs available to those with low incomes who are unable to pay their hospital bills. In many cases, bills will be reduced significantly. You will have to meet certain eligibility criteria to be able to qualify. You can contact the hospital to discuss their financial assistance programs.
Tips on negotiating medical bills
If you’ve never tried to lower your medical bills, you may feel stressed. But don’t worry, it’s not as scary as it seems! Remember, the worst they can say is “no.” Here are some tips that will help you have more success when it comes to negotiating medical bills.
Be nice and polite.
It goes without saying that if you are trying to negotiate any bill, the nicer you are, the more progress you will get. Remember, the other person on the line is just a person. Speak nicely and use a polite tone, and they will be more likely to work with you. Avoid any accusatory tone and insults. In general, just be nice and polite.
Contact the office manager if you have to.
Some doctors’ offices outsource to a third-party company to handle all of their billing needs. If you call to speak with your doctor’s billing department and they are not willing to negotiate, try calling the office directly instead.
I personally tried this and it worked! After I received a medical bill in the mail, I called the number on the bill and spoke with the billing department. The only option they gave me was to spread the amount over several months.
Reluctantly, I got off the phone with them and decided to Google the doctor’s actual office phone number. I spoke with their office manager (not in the billing department) and they reduced my bill by 35%!
I just said “Hey, I know I owe you $1,154.95. I’m willing to settle in full today for $750 over the phone.
She took about 15 seconds to respond “Okay we can do it!”
I was amazed. That’s 35% off the original invoice! If I had never thought to call the actual office, I would have had to pay the full amount. It may not work for all You have medical bills, but it’s worth a try!
Be honest and upfront.
When you call to talk to someone, be honest with them. Tell them you want to pay what you owe, but you can only pay a certain amount. Let them know that you are doing your best to pay your bills and money.
What to avoid when it comes to negotiating medical bills
Sooner or later you will deal with medical bills in your life. that it Just it will happen. The worst thing you can do when a medical bill arrives in your mailbox is to ignore it completely. You’ll have to deal with the bill eventually. So instead of throwing it in the trash, put it aside and take the time to negotiate your bill for less than you owe.
Our experience negotiating medical bills.
In early 2018, our youngest son came down with what we thought was a stomach virus. We kept him home from day care, cuddled him, and tried to get him to limit his fluids. It wasn’t until the second day at 11:00pm when my gut told me there was another error.
He was 3 years old at the time and couldn’t help but tell me that his “tummy hurts.” At 11:00 pm, I grabbed my bag and took him to the hospital near our house. After multiple tests and blood draws, they gave us a private ambulance ride to Children’s Hospital in Dallas. We arrived at 4:00 AM and had a CT scan where we learned that his appendix had ruptured and his entire stomach was infected.
If you’ve ever had to have your appendix removed, you know the pain our little boy was going through. And if you’re one of the unlucky people to have it torn apart, you know how miserable the consequences are. Needless to say, James had to have surgery to remove his appendix and clean out his stomach. Then he was on antibiotics around the clock.
The doctors said his condition was very worrying and told us that we would stay in the hospital for at least 2-3 weeks. Well, our strong boy had hundreds (if not thousands) of people praying for him. To the doctor’s surprise, we were discharged 7 days later with a prescription for antibiotics and a follow-up appointment.
Dealing with medical bills
I am so grateful that I was able to focus on our son during those tiring and stressful days. I’m not going to lie and tell you I wasn’t worried about medical bills. We were debt free by then and had 3 months of savings in our account, yet the thought of paying all those bills still kept me up at night.
I had never dealt with the blow of large medical bills, so I turned to the Internet and began researching ways to settle medical bills. With the help of some articles and my mother’s wonderful advice, we were able to significantly reduce our medical bills using the strategies shared in this article.
Medical bills can be crippling. In most cases, people are never taught that you can call and lower your bills. However, you have options when it comes to dealing with medical bills. Whether you negotiate lower bills before treatment or after treatment, you can Can Get discounts on hospital bills and medical bills.
The best way to deal with your medical bills is to be on top of them. Don’t pull it out and leave it hanging over your head. You are in control and can lower these bills using the strategies in this article.
Get your medical expenses checklist!
Do you want all this information on one beautiful, elegant page? excellent! Sign up to get our Medical Expense Tracker sent directly to your inbox!