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Practical Advice suddenly in a massive amount of medical debt

When I was in the Partial Hospitalization Program, my case manager said she talked to my insurance and was able to get everything covered for me.

Now the hospital is calling me demanding $6,000 USD, after insurance covered part of it.

I would never have agreed the program if I knew it would cost this much.I feel like I was lied to. I don't HAVE $6,000, and I'm trying to save up money for surgeries. Is there anything I can do? Am I totally fucked forever?

Legate Lanius

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I would get help from a lawyer or something. If it turns out you'll still have to pay the 6k, I'm sure you can drag it out and pay a small amount every month. You might be able to pay off the debt and at the same time save up for surgeries.

Keep your head cool, the worst case scenario is probably just having to wait with the surgeries for a while and file for bankruptcy or something. Hold on, there's no need to make any rash decisions. Now is the times to gather advice and to stay frosty. Maybe someone that isn't an unemployed drop-out will answer this thread; there's that, too.


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I'm sorry that happened to you but also glad that you got the care you needed at the time.
Like @Legate Lanius says, you can pay a small amount at a time and keep it out of collections... or screw it, let it go to collections and take the hit to your credit. Medical debt erases faster than other debt, I think (or makes less of a dent, I don't recall which).


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I've had this happen before with medical bills. If you still have the information for your case manager, you may want to try and contact them and see if they can help you. They might have paperwork from the insurance company with the preauthorization. The next thing to do would be to contact the insurance company. Clerical errors in the insurance world are extremely common, whether it be a coding issue or a box ticked wrong. If you can't get anywhere with any of that, contact the hospital and explain what is going on. They will be used to this, as it happens a lot. They may even be able to provide you with some resources and options.

I know the first thing you do when you find out you owe a large sum of money is panic, or I do. Take it one step at a time. This won't ruin you. I know because I've been there, am there, was there.
Sorry that you're going through this Esther.

You could try calling 211. They offer a range of services, some of which are related to healthcare.

As @Legate Lanius mentioned, getting some legal advice might help. There are some free or low-cost community law clinics, and also sometimes law schools will offer free legal help.

One way or another, I think the debt will get worked out.

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