As many as 80% of medical bills in the United States contain errors, according to Derek Fitteron, CEO of Medical Cost Advocate, a partner of ClaimLinx. And those errors can lead to an unnecessary increase in a bill’s overall cost. In fact the credit agency Equifax reported that for bills totaling $10,000 or more, there is an average error of $1,300.
A big reason these errors occur is the way healthcare providers classify diagnosis, symptoms and procedures. They use a coding system called the ICD-10-CM (International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision, Clinical Modification). The system is incredibly complex with mistakes leading to patients potentially being charged for procedures or testing they did not receive or more expensive versions of their care.
Errors can occur on any medical bill, but tend to be found on bills for complex medical procedures, inpatient care, care from a medical specialist or when patients receive care at a facility outside their insurance carrier’s network.
To prevent this issue for all ClaimLinx clients with a Medical Expense Reimbursement Plan, any high dollar medical claims are automatically sent to Medical Cost Advocate for review and negotiation. But employees can also help to combat this issue by being sure to check any medical bills for procedures or testing they do not recognize, especially bills totaling over $1,000.
Members should contact their provider first with questions about any bill. Then if a change must be made to a previously processed claim, they can contact the Claims Department at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Some of this information was taken from an article which featured our partner, Medical Cost Advocate, published in Employer Benefit News. Read the article.