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Are you sure that the hospital is charging the correct amount?

January 10th 2013

People are hardly in a good state of mind when they make a visit to the hospital. They are too busy in thinking about the health check-ups, medical tests, doctor appointments, medicines, etc. In most cases, what goes out of their mind is the medical bills and the fact that the hospital authorities don't charge correct amount all the time.

The hospital administration often makes mistakes while preparing the medical bills. They prepare bills consisting of illegitimate charges. Ignorant and innocent people pay the medical bills without raising any questions. However, this does not mean that you should pay whatever the hospital authority charges you. Rather, you should keep a close eye on medical bill, and find out if the hospital authority has overcharged you. Read along to know about 4 tell-tale signs that indicate something is wrong with your medical bill.

4 Signs to know that the hospital is trying to cheat you

Hospitals have become a part of life. They have become a flourishing business just like educational institutes. It will not be wrong to say that most hospitals are more interested in making money than serving people. They often overcharge patients in order to make money. They make errors in the medical bills to book bigger profits. In these circumstances, it has become very important for the people to become aware of the fraudulent activities of the hospitals.

Here are some signs that reveal you have been overcharged by the hospital:

1. Illegitimate charges: Sometimes the hospitals charge money for the services you haven't used at all. If you're the patient and it is not possible for you to look at the medical bills, then you can ask your family members to check them thoroughly. You can tell your family members about the services that the hospital has provided you with. If the hospital is charging for an antibiotic or injection which you haven't taken, then don't pay for it.

2. Wrong treatment charges: It often happens that the hospital charges you for the wrong medical treatment. For instance, you have undergone a treatment for pneumonia, but the hospital has charged you for a surgery. Look at the medical bills minutely. Go through the codes on the bills. If you can't decipher the codes, then you can browse through different medical websites to decode them.

3. Double charge: This is a simple mistake. The hospital authorities have to make hundreds of medical bills every day. Moreover, there are several departments in the hospitals. So, it is not possible for each department to know what the other department is charging for. For instance, the anaesthesiologist can charge you for your anaesthesia. On the other hand, the hospital administration may also charge you for the same thing. A thorough analysis of the medical bill can help you detect the mistake easily.

4. Exorbitant fees: Hospitals often charge excessively high fees. If you feel that the hospital is charging a very high fee, then speak with the concerned persons about it. If the hospital is breaking any laws, then you have the right to fight with the authority.

Finally, if you can bargain with the credit card companies to lower the bills, then you can apply the same strategy on your medical bills too. Around 15% of the patients negotiate with the hospitals to lower the medical bills. Around 40% of the people asking for a reduction in the bill amount get a discount. Therefore, never pay a medical bill before asking for a reduction in the fee.

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