Thursday, December 6, 2012

Estimate

While I’m stuck at home, I’m trying to stay on top of things.  I spent my morning calling about a medical bill.  Vicki went to the doctor and paid cash for her visit. Then I get a bill for her visit.  I’m floored as we paid for it in full when she went to the doctor.  I call and am told that what she paid was just an estimate.

This customer service person was rude and unhelpful.  I was told that what she paid at the time of service was just an estimate.  I responded with if I go to a mechanic to have work done, he can’t change his charges once I’ve left his facility. 

I also pointed out that this bill was higher than the one for her last appointment and nothing was done different.  She saw the doctor and nothing else – no tests were done but the bill was higher.  I asked about that and got told they had a rate increase in July.  I said when they gave the estimate it should have reflected the new prices.

The question becomes do I want to cause a problem with a credit rating over a $12 bill with an unethical medical billing procedure.  In all likelihood I will try to call one more time but won’t have a lot of success with the call.         

I know it isn’t a big bill but why should I pay a higher amount when nothing was done differently.  Additionally, I don’t know any business other than a medical facility that can change their prices randomly. 

In addition to Vicki’s bill, I have a bill for two office visits for me.  One I went to was strictly because the doctor’s office told me that if I wanted my allergy meds I had to come in to see the doctor because the insurance company required it.  Essentially I was required to go to the doctor and spend $150 in order get my prescriptions.  This is ridiculous especially since I’ve been taking allergy meds my entire adult life.  This means I have a bill simply because the doctor’s office seemed to want the money because nothing was done other than for the doctor to go on the computer and renew my prescriptions.  It took less than ten minutes for him to sit on the computer and quite frankly his time and mine could have been spent better.    

It is ridiculous how the medical business pulls in patients.  I was held over a barrel because I need my allergy meds.  It was a waste of money for the insurance company to pay and now for me to pay this additional amount.  It is a racket meant to soak the individuals for money.

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