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Choosing A Doctor

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Caring Doctor with Patient
Choosing a doctor can be a daunting process. This is a guide about choosing a doctor.
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August 19, 2009

Be a good consumer when looking for a doctor. We did not realize that, since the surgeon we selected for my husband's surgery is affiliated with a hospital, each visit was charged to us as an emergency room visit because the hospital does the billing. A $50 copay turned into a $550 surgery. Neither the hospital or the Medicare type insurance company will adjust the bill.

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While we are grateful for the insurance this unexpected amount is something that we are struggling to pay off. So, as the call center employee said, "It's the patient's responsibility to be aware of the costs." (And yes, I'm writing everyone in the companies and government to see what can be done.)

By frazzled Leslie from Metairie, LA

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August 20, 20090 found this helpful

Alert! Make an appointment to speak with the head of the billing dept. Start with an appt. to speak with the President of the hospital. This person's sec'y will direct you to the Head of billing. Bring all documentation, be polite even though your nerves are frazzled. Speaking to minor underlings does no good because they have no power. Good luck!

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August 20, 20090 found this helpful

My DH says contact the attorney general office. They should be able to help you. If that doesn't work contact local TV stations, many are doing consumer aware type programs. Ria

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August 20, 20090 found this helpful

So sorry that you have been treated so wrong. Thanks for the heads up on hidden billing cost. My husband's company is changing insurance Jan 01-10 I will be looking for such hidden cost.

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August 21, 20090 found this helpful

Every state has a group which reviews patients concerns. I found out the name of the group, I believe, thru the hospital in one of the discharge papers. I was admitted to the ER of a Denver hospital and they tried to discharge me to the airport. I had to fill out paper work and then the group reviewed my concerns and responded to them. The group was CFMC, it was a Medicare review organizarion, the Quality Improvement Organization for the state of Colorado. Find out who does this in your state. California is California Facilitated Medicare Review. They may be able to tell you if non- Medicare patients have the same type of reviewing group; I would think so. Your hospital should also have this info, good luck!

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