A Tip For People Who Are Planning Surgery

Here is a tip that will help you to work with your insurance company better.   Here is what happened to me.  I have an HSA type account with a maximum out of pocket of $2,700.00

Recently, I needed surgery done.  When the surgeon asked if I would pay an approximate cost before the surgery, I did it.

I paid him $2,700 up front.   He didn’t want to wait for Blue Cross to pay him.  I didn’t think that this would be a problem.It certainly was a problem!   Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina does not have any notification that I have paid the doctor directly.  Therefore, the calculation of deductible was thrown out of balance.  I ended up having to do a spreadsheet of each lab, anesthesiologist, hospital, assistant surgeon, and any one that was involved with this surgery.

Because Blue Cross couldn’t have known that I had already paid my deductible, the auxiliary providers, including the hospital were not paid properly.   This was an accounting nightmare.

The bottom line:  If the doctor asks you to pay up front so that he doesn’t have to worry about getting paid in a timely manner, don’t do it!  

Just say no. 

The doctor may warn that he won’t perform your surgery, but if you time it right, he will do it.  (“Timing it right”is waiting until it is close to your actual surgery date.)  

He is only requiring you to agree to pay so that he won’t have to wait for the insurance company to pay.  If you sign, the doctor will have no incentive to help you get him paid by the insurance company.  Don’t sign!