Monday, August 6, 2007

It's Bad News When the Bills Change Color

I have been getting a bill from one of my doctors about every two weeks. Every time I get a bill I call my health insurance to check on the status of my claim. The first time I called they said they needed more information. I filled out the form to release my medical records and I thought everyone was happy.

Than I got the same bill again. I called my insurance again and they assured me that they had received all of the necessary info and they would process the claim in two weeks.

I got another bill notice. I called the insurance 2 1/2 weeks later and they assured me again that they had all of the information that they needed and they would expedite the claim.

I didn't believe them so I contacted my human resources person. She called them and found out that they were waiting for my "Certificate of Creditable Coverage" from my last temporary insurance that I had during my lay off. Well, it would have been nice if they had told me that. I guess I don't know how to speak "insurance" language. I didn't know that yes, we have all the info, really means no we don't.

So, I called my last insurer and was able to get my certificate faxed to my new health insurance. Everyone was happy again...except the doctor's office who sent me a new pink notice instead of the usual white and green bill. The pink notice informed me that the bill was moving on to the land of collections where it will damage my credit. Now I was not happy.

Today I called my insurance and told them about the bill going to collections and asked if I should pay the bill. They said no I shouldn't pay it and that they have 30 days to process a claim. And since they just received all of the paperwork last Friday, the 30 days started Friday. I said that was nice that they have 30 days but this bill is going to collections in a week! She offered to call the doctor's office for me so I said ok. She called me back a little while later and said the bill was taken off delinquent status and is now "in process". I thanked her and them promptly called the doctor's office to make sure that they were happy with the situation. I didn't want to misunderstand what my insurance company told me again. I am just not confident that we are speaking the same language any more.

I just hope that they pay it or at least a large portion of it after all of this. It would be quite ironic if I had to pay the whole bill since that is what I wanted to do in the beginning.

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