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    Wednesday, May 30, 2007

    Stinkin' Hospital Bills

    So about the end of January, maybe Febraury, we got this bill from UNMC Physicians (where Jackson was born), from the anesthesiologist, for almost 500 bucks. Mind you, we had JUST written them a check for over TWO THOUSAND DOLLARS for the ENTIRE bill that we owed them (our portion after insurance). I was slightly taken aback.

    Frankly, I paid nothing the first month because I hadn't incorporated it into our budget yet. This was the FIRST bill we received for this charge.

    Next month, early March. I received another bill, "due immediately". I called and explained that we had made every effort to pay our bill in its entirety because we were of the understanding that it was our entire bill. This new, late bill was somewhat of an unpleasant surprise, I explained. The not-so-friendly gentleman I spoke to explained that it was my INSURANCE company's fault as they had not responded until the beginning of January (and only paid 12 dollars, by the way...still need to ask them about that...)

    I assured him we were willing to pay it if we owed it, and stated the monthly payment we would be able to pay. He said that just wouldn't work, and offered a payment three times as much. I said that wouldn't work. He said it had to, or our account would "proceed through collections". I said it still wouldn't work. He then said I could have him send me the "financial assistance forms" to see if we might qualify for some type of discount. I said, yes, please. More than a week passed.

    I received the forms. I filled them out, copied the necessary financial documents, made copies of all, and sent it all to the address on the form, as instructed. As in, the form stated "MAIL TO:...".

    That was early April.

    The form, and the aforementioned not-so-friendly gentleman, had told me it would take at LEAST 30 days to process our forms. He had told me that once they received our forms, it would put a "freeze" on our account and keep it from collection. So I was not surprised I hadn't heard from them yet. Their oh-so-reliable form assured me I would hear from them.

    Weeks passed. Today I received a statement in the mail from "ACS". Something-or-other-CREDIT-Services. Here's the jist: "UNMC Physicians has placed your account for collection with us. Cough it up or else." OK, so that's paraphrased.

    Needless to say, I called UNMC. Explained the whooooole situation. They said "OH, we never received any forms back from you." I told her when I had mailed them, and to where. She said "OH, well THAT'S why - you sent them to the wrong address." I explained that I had sent them to the exact address the form instructed me to send them to. She said "Yeah, they need to stop putting that on there,that's wrong." GEE, YA THINK????

    So I emailed scans of the forms to her (another reason I keep copies of EVERYTHING I mail), and Greg just went to drop hard copies in the mail. She is going to try to pull the account from collection. Then it'll be another "AT LEAST" 30 days before we hear anything again, but hopefully the VERY nice lady I talked to today will process our forms quickly so we can get this taken care of.

    I HATE outstanding bills, it drives me nuts.

    And getting a letter from a collection agency made me throw up in my mouth a little bit. Filth flarn foul foul filth.

    1 comment:

    Anonymous said...

    I want to pull my hair out for you after reading that! The whole thing is absurd on top of absurd!