An Arm and a Leg on Smash Notes

To get paid, hospitals get creative

An Arm and a Leg

Hospital bills are too high, and insurance doesn’t cover enough. Turns out, that’s a crisis for hospitals too: more and more of us aren’t paying those bills, because we can’t. So, they’re getting creative about collecting — and offering discounts. Which raises questions about why the bills are so high to begin with. We start … Continue reading "To get paid, hospitals get creative"

Episode notes last updated on July 30, 2019 06:33


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Smash Notes summary for this episode

Why would a patient go to Urgent Care instead of an Emergency Room of a hospital?

Even though James was bleeding pretty bad, he went to the Urgent Care to avoid getting a hospital bill. One of those bills could put a person in bankruptcy, and that was more terrifying than the accident itself.

How can you save money on emergency room bill cost?

Turns out, 70% of Americans have less than a thousand dollars of savings at any given time, while most insurances have at least a $1,000 deductible. That means that even insured patients have serious problems paying their deductibles, and when the patients don't pay their insurer, the hospitals don't get paid either.

Jim was told that if he could afford to pay $350 at the time of visit, he would be able to save 60% of his total hospital bill. Hospitals pull ahead in their collections when they offer payment plans and incentives to patients. Next time you are in an Emergency Room, it just might be the hospital could cut you a deal.