I go into the doctor and they take my insurance info. I wait 30 mins and see the doctor for 5 mins. It was simply a consultation to see if something "needed" to be done. I leave, nothing was said to me about a bill. 2 months later I get a bill in the mail for $300. I wait another month because medical bills are always wrong the first time.
I then call to find out what this is. "Oh we haven't run it through your ins company yet." Great now it'll either drop dramatically or go away. I get a bill the next month and it's $310!!!! Wtf it went up by $10! Must be another mistake. I wait another 2 month and nothing changes. Then I get the "we're turning you over for collections" letter. Now I need to make a phone call.
I call the billing company. "We can't change the bill. Call the doctor." I call the doctor. "You need to speak to the billing company." Erroneous! I'm not fucking playing this game! The bill started with you, fix it!
Finally they transfer me to finance for the doctor. Oh Mindi how I feel sorry for you. Mindi tells me they charge $310 for medical code blah blah blah. That's what the doctor put on there. I quickly inform her that that code and all of the others mean nothing to me. "Mindi I'm not paying $310 for 5 minutes of your doctors time." Ok she concedes. "Let me check the time records for your visit."
She calls back and tells me that it should have been a level 2 rather than a level 4 which again means nothing to me. The price however dropped to $137. Which I still find too high, but that seems worth it to me to not fight any more.
She then informs me that she will file it again through my insurance company. Jesus! Here we go again...
This interaction highlights the common problem. Nobody knows what anything costs and doctors just bill what they want. The insurance companies reign them in, but if you have a high deductible the ins company doesn't give a shit because you pay it all. What do they care, they just pass it along.
RISE UP PEOPLE! Start asking what things cost! This is the only way to bring down costs. Capitalism works but only if you use it. Health care in the USA is not run as a capitalist system. There's not even a name for it. It's bullshitism.
A friend of mine recently had to go to the hospital for an illness. She received a bill of $3,000 prior to leaving. This was with insurance! After questioning them further on the costs she got it dropped to $1,200. Sigh...