Sunday, November 22, 2015

More Madness in Billing Non VA Medical Care

In August we went to an ER directed by the Triage Nurse at the VA in Madison.
Refer to the previous post in which I quote from the VA~non VA Medical rulings:

Do I need to get approval before going to the emergency room?

No. If you are an eligible veteran, and a VA facility is not feasibly available when you believe your health or life is in immediate danger, report directly to the closest emergency room. If hospitalization is required, you, your representative or the treating facility should contact the nearest VA within 24 hours to arrange a transfer to VA care by calling the VA Transfer Center at (813) 972-7614.

In October, we recieved a EOB, explanation of benefits that Medicare had been billed.  I called them and corrected that so the Boscobel Hospital said they would then bill it properly.

I wrote down the person's name, date I spoke with her and the time of course.  Something left over from my days in Commercial Insurance and Underwriting.
She promised to re-bill it properly to the Non-VA Care, I confirmed the address she was to bill it too and I filed it as 'unresolved'.

Yesterday's mail contained a very nasty letter from the collections department of Gunderson Lutheran ~ to which the Boscobel Hospital is now affiliated with.
Let me say this. Gunderson Lutheran of LaCrosse has a ruthless billing system.
They often call the patient on the day they leave the hospital and ask if they'd pay the bill with their Master Charge or Visa.

Yes, they did that to me in 2002.  I asked the caller if they'd billed the ChampVA yet.  'Well no...'

Gundersen Lutheran is well within their 'legal' means in sending out threatening and harassing letters, but I've never met a more difficult billing department than theirs.

So tomorrow after working a Graveyard Shift, I'll come home and spend time talking to the Boscobel Business Office because there was no phone number attached to the latest threatening letter.

Once again I will explain that the billing was done incorrectly and once again I will probably call the Non VA Medical Department and speak to yet another overworked person that handles the non VA claims for disabled veterans.

Sometimes it isn't just enough to go through a serious medical issue with your spouse, but I feel sorry for those people who do go through it and then have to deal with this kind of bullying on top of an illness.

If a person doesn't have experience and know their way around hospital/clinic medical billing, it can be quite the disaster.

More on how this shakes down later.

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