Friday, September 6, 2013
Reality of a HSA/high deductible medical insurance plan
Reality is quickly setting in: we had to "eat" the first $4000 of incurred medical expenses, before our medical insurance would pay, at the negotiated "in plan" rate. This excludes well woman care,physicals. Within 6 weeks, we did just that. Now, the insurance EOB's are rolling in, as well as the bills. Case in point: my PT for the month of July, at twice a week is setting me back over $1900. While my employer had put in $2000 into my Heath Savings Account in early July, per our negotiated contract, the remaining $2000 will be taken out of my pay twice a month (on the 15th and 30th) from Sept thru June. It'll be some time before those coffers are filled. I also continued with PT twice a week in August, so I anticipate another, although not as large as we've maxed out our $4000 deductible, to be arriving within a few weeks as well.
Meanwhile, how to pay off what is owed? I had to contact the Financial Services Dept of the hospital where I get rehab, to discuss an error in a different bill. Since I had the customer rep on the phone, I inquired if I could make payment arrangements to pay off the balance, as I had already paid $580, bringing the balance down to just under $1400. She asked how much I was thinking per month. I replied, "$200." Sure, no problem. She is sending me the paperwork and a monthly billing that I should get in a few weeks. Meanwhile, although we have spent some of the initial $2000 my employer deposited, my matching $2000 will be earmarked monthly as I make $100 deposits into the HSA, then mail in the payments. There is no prepayment penalty or interest (at least that is what she told me). This is something new to me, I have never made payment arrangements with a creditor before. They seemed quite happy to do so.
So, I await reading the fine print to make sure that I understand what financial commitment I am making. I do NOT want to incurr any interest on top of the $ I have to spend for medical services received. Anyone ever made arrangements to pay back a hospital? Do they normally charge monthly interest?