How To Save Money In A Hospital
We all know that a stay in the hospital is expensive and many costs are out of your control. Remember what Groucho Marx said. "A hospital bed is a parked taxi with the meter running."
However, there are things that you can do to save money. Click on the links for more information:
- Talk with your doctor about the fee.
- If you have insurance, ask your doctors if they would be willing to accept your insurance as payment in full. Many doctors will be agreeable, particularly if the additional cost would cause you undue hardship.
- Avoid unnecessary tests and procedures.
- Keep a daily log.
- Refuse to be seen by any doctor that you don't know.
- Ask each doctor to identify him- or herself and explain what he is doing (the purpose for being in your room). After you know the doctor's identity and what the reason for the visit, you can make the decision whether to allow the doctor to proceed. Even if the doctor is only "dropping by to see how you are feeling," it is likely that you will be billed for a hospital visit.
- We recently heard of a patient who woke up to find an unknown doctor and several medical students at his bedside. The doctor introduced himself, explained that he was on teaching rounds and asked if the patient felt well enough to be interviewed and examined as part of the student's medical training. Wanting to be helpful, the patient agreed. Later to his surprise, he received a doctor bill for $250. According to the patient, "I was shocked. I just thought I was being a nice guy. This doctor never even laid a hand or stethoscope on me."
- If you have a managed care type of insurance, try to avoid doctors who are not in your network.
- Tell your doctor that you have a managed care type of health insurance and only want to be seen by in-network medical personnel unless there is an overriding need for someone out of network.
- If you can't avoid non-network doctors and your insurer refuses to pay,appeal. You can argue that you had no choice. You were in the hospital and no in-network doctor was available. This argument has been known to work.