Medical bills can wreak havoc on your budget. Consider a typical stay at hospital. According to a study by Debt.org, a day at a hospital costs an average of $3,949, and the average total cost of a hospital stay is a whopping $15,734. Knowing how much a medical bill can cost you, here are some questions you should always ask before paying.
Does The Total Seem Off?
Many times your medical bill will come with only a total owed listed. If that number seems off to you, ask for an itemized version of the bill. This way you can see every charge — no matter how small it is — and what service was rendered in return.
Are The Charges Legit?
Now that you have an itemized bill, review all the charges and make sure they match the care you received. If anything seems wrong, contact the hospital or doctor’s billing office and ask for an explanation.
Was It Billed Correctly?
Sometimes doctor’s offices and hospitals bill your insurance incorrectly. If the total of your bill appears to be too high, contact your insurance company and get them to verify the billing code. Often these mistakes are just human errors, but they can cost you plenty.
Can I Lower This Bill?
As US News reports, don’t hesitate to negotiate the bill. Billing offices will typically work with you on a payment plan or even reduce the bill in order to recoup at least some of the charges.