Friday, February 06, 2015

Whoa--Horrible health plan tricks!

I have Medicare HMO and starting this year, have to pay $10 out of pocket for those ever-popular blood tests they want you to get every five minutes. First time.

But that is a pittance compared with a friend who had a test and her Medicare PPO was allowed to charge her a $25 "equipment" fee. All tests have equipment--gloves, needles, other stuff.

But now for the kicker--my sister, who has the AARP United Plan, went for blood tests and they asked for a credit card number to which they intended to charge everything the insurance did not pay! In her case--$109!!

What the heck?

We think Medicare disallows back billing--we are checking.

Anyone else been hit like this? These skeevos are going to gouge everything they can. But can they?

We are not sure.


Anna Maria said...

My Medicare HMO hasn't started charging me for blood tests but I'm not sure if they will start this year or not, I haven't been yet. They have been gradually upping the co-pays the last few years. Not sure if this is a result of "Obamacare" or not. I suppose they are skimming everything off Medicare they can to pay for other services but they should leave those who contributed for decades alone.

Star Lawrence said...

I always feel like they have a hidden agenda--even besides making patients pay more and more. My sister was prescribed methotrexate for a pesky itching foot--the possible side efx were awful--and when she asked the cost--the pharm said it was FREE, no copay at all. I had never heard of that--it made me suspicious.

Anna Maria said...

Star...I wonder if it isn't healthcare providers who are taking advantage of health insurers. I keep getting calls from "someone" who claims they are helping out my primary provider telling me I haven't had this or that test done yet and I should come to them to get it. I keep telling them I don't have symptoms that warrant those tests and will rely on my PP who I see every 3 months for a well check. I'm not sure that often is necessary either if I don't have symptoms. Then if you do, they tell you to go to an emergency clinic because he is too booked. I think there are scams on healthcare all the way around.

Star Lawrence said...

I ignore all those questionnaires from my Medicare HMO--mainly bec I don't want the govt to get all this info and mainly just because---shut up, why don't ya! I got a card just yesterday--we will pay you $15 to get a "wellness" visit. First, I hate that word--I will make up the words, thank you, don't even try. And second, because I do have to go to the PCP to get my BP meds extended--that is how they get ya. But I am not claiming $15--not getting any more tests esp if they cost out of pocket--and not going to specialists just bec they say to! I will probably die of irritation, not any of this other stuff! Oh--and the plan "newsletter" said pls cooperate with Medicare with THEIR questionnaire...Nope.