By Woodrow Wilcox
On July 26, 2018, I met with a senior citizen client from Munster, Indiana. Together, we phoned a hospital to discuss a medical bill problem. Our client granted permission for me to speak and question on her behalf.
Before that phone call, I had already done research with and for our client. I knew that Medicare ruled that the medical service in question was NOT covered by Medicare. It was an ultrasound study of arteries and arterial grafts of both legs. Her doctor ordered the test. Medicare refused to pay anything for it.
We made the phone call because I thought the bill might be refused due to bad coding or unsubstantiated medical reasons for the medical service. But, the hospital representative told me it was refused because of an official policy decision of Medicare. The hospital knew of the policy to refuse to cover this service and it had persuaded our client to sign an ADVANCE BENEFICIARY NOTICE which warned the patient that the service probably would not be covered by Medicare. If a medical service is not covered by Medicare, neither Medicare nor the Medicare supplement insurance company will pay anything on the bill. The senior citizen patient gets the bill and no help to pay it.
Why would Medicare NOT pay for such a medical service when the doctor needed it done to help the patient? The answer may surprise you – OBAMACARE. In July of 2012, the Congressional Budget Office published its two year study of Obamacare. It reported that the Obamacare law had slashed over $716 BILLION from the Medicare budget. Since then, the federal government has been looking for ways to shift medical care costs off the federal government and onto the backs of senior citizens. One of the ways it is doing that is by changing the rules of Medicare.
The hospital that sent the bill to our client had acted prudently. The only thing that I could do was negotiate a payment schedule of $100 per month until the bill is paid. I could not help the client more. I don’t have a magic wand and I am unable to change federal government policy.
Note: Woodrow Wilcox has saved senior citizens over two million dollars by fighting mistakes and fraud in the Medicare system. He wrote the book SOLVING MEDICARE PROBLEM$. Wilcox is a former elected Democratic Party precinct committeeman and a former columnist with the publication LABOR NEWS.
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© Woodrow Wilcox 2018