Call 12 for Action: Negotiating a doctor's bill

Tips to negotiate a lower balance on your medical bills.

It's a useful piece of advice, maybe for some it's even common sense, but many people don't know you can negotiate a doctor's bill. 

That's exactly what 12 News viewer Barbara, who lives in Chandler, did--however, she then ran into another problem. The Call 12 for Action team was able to help her. 

Barbara had been getting infusions at her doctor's office. 

Her bill came out to about $6,000, but her insurance only covered about $4,000. 

She started negotiating with her doctor's office. They eventually agreed to only charge her what her insurance would cover, but in the meantime, Barbara had been paying small amounts of money to keep the doctor's office from reporting her to a debt collection agency. 

In the course of a year, that came out to $1,750, and she was having a hard time getting that back. 

That's when she decided to Call 12 for Action, and volunteer Rich helped her out. 

"When the doctor's office got a call from us, they really expedited her return of $1,750, so in that sense, I think we were very helpful,"Rich said. 

There are two takeaways here:

1) Know that you can negotiate a doctor's bill. Many times the doctor's office will work with you.

2) Any time you have an expensive procedure, you should ask for a copy of your doctor's notes. They can influence how much insurance bills you. 

© 2017 KPNX-TV


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