How to Spot Medical Bill Errors

Healthcare advocacy group Medical Billing Advocates of America estimates that up to 80% of all medical bills have errors. While working with high volumes of work and thousands of medical codes, it’s easy to see why billing mistakes happen. Not all those errors result in an that will cost you money. But, given all the errors, it’s crucial to look over your bill thoroughly. Medical costs are high enough. So, avoid paying more than you should. Consider these tips for spotting errors.

  • If the invoice from the medical provider is not itemized, obtain an itemized bill before paying the invoice.
  • Confirm that charges on each line item of the invoice are for services you received from that provider.
  • Check for upcoding, a charge for a more expensive service, or a charge for the same service provided in a more expensive location (an ambulatory surgery center owned by a hospital billed as out-patient surgery). Compare the insurers’ explanation of benefits to the bill.

Only when everything aligns should you pay the provider invoice. If you can’t work it out with the provider or insurer, reach out to your Human Resources (HR) representative. Hopefully, your employer has a claim advocacy service that they can connect you with. If not, most employer medical plans have an insurance broker, advisor, or consultant. Have HR contact them on your behalf for assistance. It’s not always easy. It can be time-consuming. But the errors can and should be corrected.

Errors on your medical bills are common, but that doesn’t mean you can’t spot them and save yourself money. Take charge of your healthcare dollars by reviewing your medical bills to spot any mistakes. If you need any assistance regarding your benefits, contact the team at Eli Advisors.

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Eric Thieringer President
Eric Thieringer is president of Eli Advisors, an HR, payroll and employee benefits firm focused on serving small to mid-size organizations. Eli's services and support address the frustrating gaps that challenge employers and their employees. By solving these problems, Eli Advisors creates financially sustainable programs and services that help organizations attract, retain, and engage the talent needed to succeed.