August 8, 2011 |
Several months ago I went to the emergency room for a respiratory problem. I was treated and released the same night. I was a self-pay patient. I requested the detailed billing to compare with my medical record and found several errors, including duplicated charges and overcharged items. When I discussed this with the billing department they refused to admit it. What is my next step in this situation? It's critical that you put your dispute with the hospital in writing, clarifying that your itemized bill contains items or services that have been billed in error, says Pat Palmer, founder of Medical Billing Advocates of America, a consumer advocacy group in Roanoke, Va. List each item you're disputing and request that the inaccurate charges be removed or that a written response with documentation to support the charges be sent to you. If you've hit a brick wall with the billing department, escalate your complaint, says Martin Rosen, an executive vice president of Health Advocate, a patient advocacy organization based in Plymouth Meeting, Pa. Address your letter to either the chief financial officer or chief executive officer of the hospital, or both, and indicate that you've tried and failed to settle the matter with the billing department.
August 17, 2011 |
Talk to a doctor about medical malpractice, and he or she is likely to tell you this: Patients don't necessarily sue because a doctor made a mistake, they sue because they got a bad outcome. A report released today by the New England Journal of Medicine bears this out. It finds that in a given year, 7.4% of doctors (on average) get sued by patients, but only 20% of those claims (on average) result in some sort of payment. Researchers from Harvard, USC and the Rand Corp. in Santa Monica examined malpractice claims against nearly 41,000 doctors who were covered by a single insurance company from 1991 to 2005.
February 13, 2003 |
Democratic presidential hopeful John F. Kerry underwent successful surgery for an early form of prostate cancer, with his doctor saying there were no indications that the disease had spread. He also indicated that the Massachusetts senator could be released as early as Saturday. Dr. Patrick Walsh, chief of urology at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, said that he and Dr.
August 19, 1996
Trimedyne Inc. said the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office upheld the validity of all of the claims on its laser patent. In 1995, Laser Industries Ltd. filed a petition with the patent office asking that Trimedyne's patent be reexamined. The patent gives Trimedyne the ability to manufacture other lasers with higher power and unique energy delivery capabilities, the company said.
May 7, 1996 |
Millions of men who suffer enlarged prostates now can choose a one-hour treatment over drugs or surgery: a machine that microwaves the prostate to relieve urinary symptoms. The Food and Drug Administration approved the Prostatron, which kills excess prostate tissue by heating the gland with microwaves, based on studies showing it may help 75% of patients. It is an outpatient procedure that appears to work better than drugs and clearly is safer than surgery, said Dr.
March 6, 1985 |
President Reagan will undergo his annual physical checkup Friday at the Bethesda Naval Hospital in suburban Maryland, the White House said today. He will be examined by a team of Navy doctors specializing in cardiovascular medicine, urology and ophthalmology, and they will reassess the condition that led to partial removal of a small benign polyp from the President's anal canal.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 3, 1987
"Su Doctor," a free referral service designed to link Spanish-speaking patients with Spanish-speaking physicians, is being offered by Doctors Hospital of Santa Ana and Santa Ana Hospital Medical Center. By calling 1-800-44-DOCTOR weekdays and Saturdays, a caller can be referred to a Spanish-speaking doctor in areas of Orange County and Whittier.