Dealing with financial problems related to medical bills

Very few people in Illinois are prepared to handle a medical emergency financially. For this reason, many people end up with financial problems after a long hospital stay or expensive procedure. Even with insurance, the amount of medical bills can be overwhelming. For those without insurance, or if insurance will not cover a procedure, hospital or doctor, the financial impact can be devastating.

It can be difficult to keep track of all of the different sources of medical bills. Each doctor, hospital or testing facility could generate a bill. Some bills will not be sent to the patient until months after service. In addition to keeping track of the number of bills, it may be helpful to scrutinize each bill to be sure that the charges are correct.

If there are any questions about anything on a statement, patients have the right to call either the provider or insurer or both. If there are any disputes regarding a bill, it would be beneficial to let the provider know. This could keep the provider from turning over the account to collections while the dispute is being resolved. However, if possible, paying the bill in order to avoid collections and being reimbursed later may be necessary.

However, there are times when it is not possible to pay all of the medical bills received. These financial problems can sometimes become unbearable. In that case, filing for bankruptcy could provide an Illinois family with the relief it needs. Having the opportunity to start over could be just what the doctor ordered.

Source: Fox Business, How Medical Debt Affects Your Credit Score, Janna Herron, Oct. 16, 2013

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