Day 18: Avoid Big Hospital Bills

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure policy here.

This post is part of the 31 Days to Radically Reduce Your Expenses series. Visit this page for even more ways to slash costs and eliminate unnecessary spending! 

Don't get stuck with a hospital bill you can't afford. Try one of these 5 strategies to help lower the cost!

Thankfully, our only experience with a big hospital bill was Joseph’s appendectomy, and even then we got away with thousands of dollars worth of savings, because one, they didn’t bill it correctly and two, by the time they fixed the errors, it was too late do really do anything about it!

However, I know so many of you have first-hand experience with medical expenses that just keep piling up — whether it’s excessive delivery charges, hefty ER fees, or serious surgeries that keep you in the hospital for more than a few days. It can really add up…and fast.

If you’re looking for ways to slash medical costs and prevent big hospital bills, look no further than these top 5 tips. You’ll avoid huge expenses and still provide great healthcare for your family!

How to Reduce Hospital Bills:

1. Try a Walk-In Clinic – If you have a medical emergency that isn’t too serious, choose a walk-in clinic over a big box hospital. Most clinics have the capability to do x-rays and prescribe meds, and will refer you to the hospital if you really need one. Most of the time, you only owe clinics a co-pay, which eliminates those nasty ER fees!

[embed_popupally_pro popup_id=”23″]


2. Negotiate and Pay Cash  – Like we talked about with Doctor’s Visits, if you don’t have health insurance, try paying cash for your hospital visit. Yes, you will probably have to pay upfront before any procedure is done, but it’s certainly worth the negotiation to get rid of a big bill. Here is a funny story about a $2000+ ant bite and how this reader was able to whittle down the cost!

3. Call Around For Prices – Surprisingly, every hospital has a different billing price for each procedure, and these can vary greatly between hospitals in the same city, or located just a few hours away from each other. If you’re considering any sort of surgery, place a few calls to get the best deal. You should remember there are always additional costs like anesthesiologists, x-ray techs, and various medications in addition to the surgeon. But if choosing a doctor based on price makes you uncomfortable, definitely stick with one who comes highly recommended, and try one of the other methods to save instead!

4. Dispute Your Bill – Sometimes, hospitals charge for the most outrageous things, such as $800 for an aspirin or $1,000 for a doctor checking in on you for less than a minute. We had an emergency room fiasco a few years ago where I was not admitted because they didn’t think my eye issues were that serious, when actually they were, as determined by the ophthalmologist I saw the following day. I was able to get my $100 emergency room fee waived because I wrote a letter signed by my eye doctor to the hospital, explaining the situation and that I shouldn’t be held responsible for the fee. Lesson learned: Always question your bill if something doesn’t look right!

5. Ask About a Payment Plan – If all else fails, there’s no harm in asking to be put on a payment plan with your hospital. Most are willing to set up a plan interest free, and this can alleviate so much financial pressure if you can’t afford a certain procedure. Be careful though, as you don’t want to get caught up in the cycle of medical debt – keep track of payments on your end, and create a little payment schedule of your own. You need to get rid of any debt as soon as possible!

Today’s Challenge:

Take a few minutes to research walk-in clinics closest to your home, and pop the number and address into your phone’s contact list so you’ll always have it with you. It’s up to you to determine the level of medical emergency care you need, but this at least gives you an alternative option to avoid a big bill from the hospital when sickness strikes

More Must-Reads:

Disclosure: Some of the links in the post above are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. Read my full disclosure policy here.

Was this post helpful? Please consider sharing the love!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *