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Where in the country?

I keep hearing that if you have no health insurance that you can go to the ER and they will basically treat you for free. I have had no health insurance for years, and yes I have gone to the ER, but I have had to pay for it EVERY SINGLE TIME, even when we were both out of work, we still got a bill and we still had to pay for it. So where does this happen at and how?

Answer Question
 
Anonymous

Asked by Anonymous at 3:05 PM on Nov. 24, 2009 in Politics & Current Events

Answers (21)
  • Illegals get free med at the ER, simply because you can't track them down to pay for it and they use false information. I am sure that's not ALL of them, but the majority. If they paid their medical bills many of the hospitals near borders would still be open.
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:07 PM on Nov. 24, 2009

  • Many hospitals have a charity of sorts, that if you cannot pay your bill, will assist you in making payments on it, or pay the whole thing off. You need to contact the phone number on the bill and ask if they have a program like that there.
    NightPhoenix

    Answer by NightPhoenix at 3:07 PM on Nov. 24, 2009

  • I have lived in the south, NE, and the west. I have had to go to the ER in all those places sans insurance. I always had to pay. Not right then, but I got a bill within a week and trotted into the financial counselor's office to make arrangements.

    I haven't seen it either. The hospital was a barracuda when it came to collectng.
    LiliM

    Answer by LiliM at 3:09 PM on Nov. 24, 2009

  • I've never heard of it being FREE... Just that if you go to the ER, they can't refuse to treat you if you don't have health insurance.
    Anouck

    Answer by Anouck at 3:12 PM on Nov. 24, 2009

  • NP, I wish I had known that then. I was able to set up a payment plan, but there was no help or forgiveness of any aspects of my bills. I wish.

    And I don't know if hospitals are as forgiving anymore. My DH got a bill where he went to the hosp for one thing, and then got better and got pheumonia from all the unmonitored fluids they gave him. They denied and fought tooth and nail and would not reduece the amouint one penny.
    LiliM

    Answer by LiliM at 3:13 PM on Nov. 24, 2009

  • Many people don't pay and the hospital eventually writes it off.
    Carpy

    Answer by Carpy at 3:14 PM on Nov. 24, 2009

  • "Many hospitals have a charity of sorts, that if you cannot pay your bill, will assist you in making payments on it, or pay the whole thing off. You need to contact the phone number on the bill and ask if they have a program like that there. "

    We did and we didn't qualify, my husband had just been laid off and I was laid off a few months later. I don't remember what happened, but my husband, who NEVER goes to the doctor for anything had to go to the ER and they gave us the number and we had to apply for assistance and even though we had little to no income at the time, they said we didn't qualify for help. So I don't know where people are getting the help from. We still had to pay the whole bill, they wouldn't even pay for part of it.
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:14 PM on Nov. 24, 2009

  • My DD fell and hit her head on the sidewalk and it left a cut on her forehead. We took her to the ER because of the way she fell. They charged us 200 bucks for a Dr to put a band aid on. No X Ray or nothing. Just a light in her eyes and a band aid. Ridiculous.

    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:14 PM on Nov. 24, 2009

  • "Many people don't pay and the hospital eventually writes it off. "


    Now that I can believe!
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:15 PM on Nov. 24, 2009

  • I don't see many people say you will be treated for free, only that you will be treated. Why would you deserve to be treated for free? Everyone else pays for it - even if you're on medicaid/medicare there are co-pays for certain things. But if you absolutely cannot pay, you can file a hardship form with any hospital and at their discretion you can be absolved of the debt. You can also make payment plans, and if you're a responsible adult who pays on time every month, they will let you stretch the bill out for years.
    NotPanicking

    Answer by NotPanicking at 3:20 PM on Nov. 24, 2009

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