It’s over. It’s finally over!!!! I just received a 100% correct final bill for the physical therapy services my husband had last year. Yes, last year. The appointments started in February 2011 and ended in June 2011. And we just received (FINALLY!) a bill with all correct amounts.
I consider myself to be relatively intelligent person. Not only that, but as part of my job, I help other people understand and confirm the accuracy of their medical billings. I enjoy doing it and I'm good at it. But the brain teasers I had to solve in order to understand these particular billings were amazing. I estimate that I spent more than 30 hours reviewing these billings, going to our healthcare website, calling our healthcare company, calling the physical therapy’s billing office. And I blame not only the physical therapy company, but our health insurance company as well.
So what concerns me about all this? It’s the old, “you don’t know what you don’t
know”. How many people are blindly paying their medical bills assuming they are correct? How many people are blindly paying their medical bills because they have no idea how to read them or confirm their accuracy? This really gets me and is just one more reason why it’s so important to seek out help if you don’t feel comfortable reviewing them on your own.
Some studies suggest up to 80% of medical bills contain errors!!! EIGHTY PERCENT!!!!!
As our population ages, the number of medical bills coming through the mail will be increasing. Expect to take a lot of time understanding these billings. Each one is different. And oftentimes, they appear correct at first glance. But you really need to dig into the details to confirm their accuracy.
Consumer Reports website has a great article to help you understand more. See www.consumerreports.org/cro/money/personal-investing/check-medical-bills-for-errors/overview/index.htm
I, myself, would share more tips, but I have 30 hours of my life to get back!