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HOW TO FIND OUT IF YOUR MEDICAL BILL CAN BE FORGIVEN

Lots of people qualify— but providers won’t always tell you, or make it easy. Luckily, you can get help.

Sponsored by Telethink Health

If you’re facing a medical bill, you may qualify to get it written off entirely. 

Charity care policies make that possible. The majority of U.S. hospitals are non-profits, and they’re legally required to have charity care policies, sometimes they’re called financial assistance policies. These policies mean that if your income falls below a certain level, the hospital has to forgive your bill.

This is even more powerful than it might seem, for three reasons:

First, you don’t necessarily have to be dirt poor to qualify for help: Many hospitals give financial assistance to people with incomes at multiples of the federal poverty level. 

Second, for-profits often have charity-care policies too — and studies show they’re at least as generous as nonprofits, on the whole.

Third, charity care isn’t limited to hospitals. A lot of places you may go for medical care are owned by hospital systems, which have been gobbling up medical practices for years and years. 

So the door — and bill — for your local doctor’s office or medical clinic may feature the logo for a hospital system. This means that the hospital’s financial-assistance policy probably applies.

But don’t expect the hospital to tell you, or encourage you to apply. Hospitals have admitted to billing patients for $2.7 billion that could have been forgiven with charity care, in a single year. And that’s just what they admit to. Some actively try to minimize the aid they give.

Luckily, there’s help available. Like a lot of people, I learned about the power of financial assistance from Jared Walker, who laid it out in a 60-second TikTok  (which we fact-checked — and wow did it check out).

Since making that video in early 2021, Jared’s organization Dollar For has built a system for helping people access charity care. 

Take advantage of their amazing resources. Those include:

All of this is free.  

Need help now? Go there directly HERE





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