Nobody Told Me That My Insurance Company Did Not Pay The Hospital. – Alex

“Dear Steve,

I visited hospital and did x-ray and other laboratory test. I was told that my insurance would have paid it. I paid copay first time and I thought that was it. Nobody told me the possible amount that I must have paid.

My insurance company denied all amount because they stated that it’s pre existing condition. The total charge is about USD 2,000. I am a college student and hardly pay my tuition and fees. I physically can not afford this amount. I got letter from the hospital and it says “If I do not submit the payment during 30 days my account will be sent to the central billing office”.

My question is, I can not pay this amount, what happens If I do not pay. or what is the best option here to do. Thank you very much


Dear Alex,

Health insurance benefits are an often misunderstood part of finances. Many people think that health insurance is responsible for certain parts of your liability to a health care provider. And even health professionals begin to believe this but it is not true.

When you have any type of medical service performed ultimately you are totally responsible for the bill and any payment from your insurance company is there to help relive a part of your obligation. If the insurance company denies the claim for service for whatever reason, you remain 100% responsible for the debt.

You have a couple of options here.

  1. If you feel that the claim was unfairly denied you can appeal the decision with your health insurance company and how they reverse their decision.
  2. You can attempt to make mutually agreeable repayment arrangement with the hospital for the debt. The hospital should be agreeable to some sort of monthly payment plan to resolve this debt.

If neither of those options works out for you then it would be within the right of the hospital to send you account out for collection. These days, medical providers seem to be getting more aggressive about collecting debts and if the debt went on without some sort of plan or resolution then you could be sued by the hospital for repayment.

Your situation unfortunately highlights the need for a better health care system in the U.S. that eliminates situations like this. Yours is a good example of why medical debts are a large reason why people wind up going bankrupt when faced with no other solution to a medical debt.


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Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.
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