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I am going to take a bit of a survey here and hopefully I can get some understanding of a situation. In November I went to the Dr. to get my records transferred and my scripts renewed. I spoke with the physician and no tests were run, I signed some papers in the office for release of my records from other clinics. I paid my co-pay. I recently find out that I have a bill (have not rec'd it as yet) for a bit over $14. Almost equal to my co-pay and one I am supposed to pay. I made several phone calls to the clinic, the hospital (bill was from them for some 'general' charge with no specifics) the insurance agent and back to the clinic. Each time the blame was placed on a different place. The final blame being posed toward Medicare law changes. So if I am understanding this correctly 'due to a medicare law change all clinics, labs etc that have a hospital affiliation are REQUIRED to bill for this facility charge if they are within 50 miles of the hospital in question. And the patient is required to pay the difference because Medicare does not pay this. My reaction is WTF? So this charge is because of Medicare?? Is that correct?? Does that mean that only people on Medicare get this double whammy? If so is this not a horrible discrimination toward those over 65? Can anyone please explain this to me? And if this is the case why is this additional charge not covered by insurance or is this simply an end run around the usual and customary write downs that are done by Medicare? Is this common practice in states other than SD??? Please do respond with comments. I want to hear from you.
I have friends who have had the same thing happen during the same time period. They went to the Dr ... just to see about moving records etc. The clinic had assured him that they took his insurance and said nothing in either instance to us as "new patients" regarding this charge. Both of us paid the co-pay required by our insurance. My bill for the first visit which had no tests preformed was 14, his was 11 (same clinic) He then went back and they drew blood to check some levels for meds. He then paid his co-pay again (and nothing was said about additional charges) and he just recieved a bill for the "general hospital charge" in the amount of 18 dollars and some cents. So how is this charge being computed? The clinic does the blood tests on site. Neither of us have gone to the hospital for anything. I am totally confused and frustrated. There is absolutely no way to go to a clinic that does not charge this as all regional clinics I have checked with give me the same story due to their affiliation with the two large regional hospitals. I just do not understand.