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Medical Bills

Everyone’s health is unpredictable. There is no guarantee that you’ll wake up tomorrow and feel 100% fit. You may sometimes experience an unexpected situation where you’ll require immediate medical help. An emergency like a workplace injury or a sudden decline in health can lead to much bigger problems. We’re not even able to trust our bodies sometimes. These occurrences require medical attention, which can prevent further issues in your health. 

Visiting the doctor or the hospital is a scary thing to do for some. The thought of a checkup or facing a high medical bill prevents many from seeking professional help. Your health shouldn’t be at risk because of your fear of the bill. You also shouldn’t have to prolong visiting a healthcare professional because of the cost of healthcare. 

We’re here to help you find a solution to high medical bills and how to prevent medical debt. 

1. Don't Ignore the Bills 

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Do not ignore your medical bills at any cost. If you refuse to pay your medical bills, the healthcare provider will forward them to a debt collection agency. This can affect your credit score and put you in an even worse situation. You may also face legal charges, or the provider can sue you. If you lose the case, the provider can charge your bank account or begin to access your income. 

2. Check Your Medical Bill

The healthcare system can get very hectic. One reason bills are so high is due to errors. Double-check your invoice and look out for any mistakes or mischarges. Keeping an eye on these things can save you a lot of money and prevent you from paying for services you did not receive. 

3. Don’t Use Credit Cards

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Using a credit card to pay off all your medical debt is not wise. Medical bills can feel like they’ll never end. You may think of handling the situation using your credit card, but you can end up in a much worse situation. 

A high balance on your credit card can result in high-interest rates, which will become even more challenging to pay off. Your credit score will plummet and affect other aspects of your life. Medical bills come with little to no interest, which is not always available with credit cards. You’re better off paying your medical debt directly through the provider than through your credit card. 

There is still room for negotiation with a provider so you can make adjustments to your bill. However, a credit card company is not as lenient with payments and complicated situations. 

4. Try to Negotiate

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There is always room for negotiation when it comes to medical bills. According to a survey, they found that three-quarters of respondents tried to negotiate their account, and 93% of them were able to have their bill reduced or dropped altogether. 

Healthcare providers understand how difficult it can be to pay medical bills, so they always keep room for negotiating. They’re ready to give discounts and consider specific circumstances. If you are part of a low-income family, you have a better chance of reducing your bill or not having to pay at all. 

In some cases, healthcare providers offer financial assistance to low-income families. If you’re in a difficult situation or require extra help, you can speak to your provider to see if there’s any room for exceptions. 

5. Apply for Financial Assistance

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As we were just mentioning, financial assistance is an option. Some hospitals are ready to offer this to struggling patients financially. You may also find other organizations that provide financial assistance to specific people. You will have to prove that you belong to a low-income household by submitting documents like bank statements, tax returns, account information, and pay stubs. 

Another form of financial assistance is crowdfunding. If your medical bills are going to haunt you for the rest of your life, there’s no harm in seeking help from the public. Some patients create charities to gather money and pay for medical treatments or surgery. Others sometimes post on a platform and tell people they’re collecting money for a medical cause or procedure. For example, GoFundMe is a very well-known website that helps individuals crowd-fund. Privately, you can also try to collect money to help pay off your medical bills. 

6. Apply For a Loan 

A loan might be an option that interests you because, at times, you may be able to find a provider that offers no-interest loans. Similar to what we said before, you should avoid high-interest charges. If you cannot pay off your loan, you’ll get stuck paying high-interest rates. Loans have lower interest rates when compared to credit cards and are not too challenging to obtain. 

7. Medical Credit Cards 

If you have a better chance of getting a credit card over a loan, then go for a medical credit card. This type of card is explicitly used to cover your medical bills and may come with some benefits that cater specifically to healthcare needs. 

You can work towards paying your card debt over time instead of having to empty all your savings at once. A medical credit card usually has a low or no interest rate, making it easier for you to repay your debt. Their policies are more flexible because they understand your challenging situation, but it depends on the company. 

8. Private Insurance

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Another option you have is to purchase private health insurance. Health insurance can do it for you if you want to protect yourself and have something to fall back on. Some employers offer coverage. Otherwise, you may have to seek an insurance company on your own. You must do your research and choose a company offering a policy that suits you best. Prices can vary along with the plans, where not all policies cover 100% of your medical bills. 

Depending on the service/treatment, your insurance policy will compensate you for the charges. Most companies offer plans that only cover a specific amount of your medical bill based on the service you are receiving. For example, your insurance company may not cover a regular checkup at your family doctor, but they will pay 80% of the cost to obtain a blood test. 

Health insurance doesn’t mean you shouldn’t keep emergency savings on the side. You may still have to pay for things on the spot, and don’t forget the monthly premium you’ll be paying to the insurance company.  

9. Find a Flexible Payment Plan 

Most likely, your medical bills aren’t going anywhere. That’s why having a flexible payment plan can make your lives much more manageable. A platform like Denefits helps people pay off their bills by offering flexible payment plans. Denefits will pay off your medical debt and arrange payments between you and your provider.

Many healthcare providers utilize Denefits to process medical payments for their patients. They guarantee no credit checks, so regardless of your credit score, you will be approved to use Denefits. They offer flexible payment plans as well, which can help a ton. These payment plans allow you to schedule and budget your payments to pay off your medical bills according to your monthly income. You can gradually work towards clearing your debt at a pace that suits you best. 

So look for healthcare providers that have partnered with Denefits. If you want access to flexible payment plans and other healthcare financing options, visit denefits.com or download the app.