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Grassroot healthcare reform.Posted Tuesday, August 18, 2009, at 4:50 PM
This isn't going to be exactly what you expect but it is about health care and it is about changing things.
I requested a copy of my statement for some recent treatment I received because the insurance just had it listed as $XXXX.XX for June and $XXXX.XX for July. I was trying to be a responsible patient so I called them and asked how the billing was broken down. They did not know and suggested I contact my medical billing office.
I just got the detailed statement and it is sitting on my desk as I write this. I know what doctor submitted the bill, but after that it is all multiple entries of short abbreviations that mean very little to me. What about changing detailed bills so the PATIENT can understand it? Maybe we could catch billing errors. (not that they EVER happen)
What also surprised me is that the insurance company did not seem to be concerned that I could not double check things. Since computers can only compute what people put in and since people are human (meaning they can make mistakes) why would they not want someone double checking this stuff? How many millions are lost or gained by this?
Maybe every error the patient finds, it could be applied to their deductible. Wow! We might even MAKE money! If nothing else, overall health costs might be reduced if the patient took responsibility and had a decent chance at understanding the billing.
I realize that more patient questions could increase payroll needed to explain it, but either it would create more jobs or they would explain it better in the first place. What a concept!
This will probably disappear into the internet black hole, but I had to vent a bit.
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Steve Mills and his wife have one daughter and live on a farm outside of Bell Buckle. They previously owned two coffee/ice cream shops, currently operate an internet sales company and teach classes, but his primary job involves the paper industry worldwide. Hobbies and interests lie in gardening, photography, recorded music and of course, their pets.
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