Saturday, January 1, 2011

Free Help to Deal With Your Medical Bills and Debts

There's a lot of baloney about "free money to pay your bills," and when you cut through the hype, it means "free to pay your bills with anything left over from Social Security or welfare."  Big deal.  But there IS something--or somebody--that can help with your medical bills. 

What many people don't know is that most hospitals have a finance office with which you can talk and work out payment issues, or contest bills that may have mistakes (here's an eye opening look at what mistakes hospitals can make while billing).  Furthermore, it helps to have a patient advocate help you sort them out.  A "patient advocate" is someone who represents you, who knows what to look for in patient billing, and knows about different sources of financial help that may be available to you.  For people with a "life threatening or debilitating disease", the Patient Advocate Foundation may work as advocates to represent you and help you negotiate your bills and find money to pay them if possible, all for free.  They may also help with insurance coding, preauthorizations and appeals, medical debt crisisco-payment assistance for medicine or treatments,  Medicaid, Medicare, the process of filing for disability with Social Security, and more.  To see if you qualify, check out their website or call them toll-free at (800) 532-5274.

Their website is full of goodies by itself. Their resources page links to lots of information about financial help, support services, and employment rights for the severely and chronically ill.  Their financial help page includes a link to state resources and a list of companies that will convert life insurance policies into cash.

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