Frequently Asked Questions
Why am I asked the same questions each time I register at your facility?
The information you provide to us during the registration process provides information for your medical record as well as the information necessary to bill any third party payors for the services provided to you. We have found that verifying your address, date of birth and insurance information each time you register is the best way to ensure accurate billing to your insurance company. Once this information is entered into our system, the bill is sent electronically to your insurance company. We must send accurate and updated information to avoid rejections or long delays in payment. Once your insurance company has processed your claim, a bill will be sent to you for any portion of the account balance that is your responsibility.
How do I know if my insurance company requires pre-certification, prior approval or requires notification for specific services?
Any pre-certification, prior approval or notification requirements with your insurance company are your responsibility. Contact your insurance company using the number located on the back of your insurance card. If you are still unsure, contact Utilization Review at 402-372-2404 at St. Francis Memorial Hospital for assistance. Failure to obtain the required authorizations may result in reduced benefits from your insurance company.
How do I know if St. Francis Memorial Hospital and their Physicians contract with my insurance company?
To receive full insurance benefits, some health plans require you to go to an “in-network” or “participating provider” hospital or physician. The best way to find out if we are a participating provider with your insurance plan is to contact your insurance company and ask if they show St. Francis Memorial Hospital and/or the Physician you are scheduled to see as participating providers.
Why do I have to give you information about other insurance if I have Medicare?
Before we bill Medicare, Medicare requires us to bill any insurance that could be responsible for your expenses. Medicare does not allow us to file a claim with them until the other insurance company denies them. In some cases, another party may be responsible for your expenses before we bill Medicare. For example, if you were hurt in a car accident, at work or on someone else’s property, the hospital must make sure those claims are filed correctly. Additionally, if the claim is denied by the insurance company or partially paid, that information must also be sent to Medicare before Medicare will pay.
How much is my procedure going to cost?
You may contact Utilization Review at 402-372-2404 to get an estimate of the cost of your procedure. You will be given an estimate of hospital charges only based on the service(s) you are scheduled to receive. You may receive additional charges from your physician, the radiologist and/or pathologist. Please be as specific as possible when describing the procedure you are to have done. Based on the information provided we will give you an estimate of the charges you will incur during your procedure. Please remember that the estimate given to you is the average charge for that procedure. The actual charge may vary based on the services delivered and your medical condition. If additional tests or services are ordered by your provider, the actual charge may vary from the estimate given to you.
Why do I have more than one account number on my statement?
A separate account number is generated for each episode of service which may include an inpatient admission, outpatient visit or a clinic visit. This enables us to bill for specific charges and diagnoses relating to your care for that date of service and enables your insurance company to apply the proper benefits. There is one exception to this rule. Multiple visits for physical therapy, occupational therapy or cardiac rehab are each billed to one account number.
Why did I receive so many bills? Why are the hospital and physician bills separate?
Most hospital visits involve both physician and hospital resources. The physicians bill their charges separately from the hospital. For example, when you make a visit to our emergency room you will receive a bill from St. Francis Memorial Hospital for the facility fee and a bill from Dinklage Medical Clinic for the physician fee. This is also applicable for patients that visit one of our specialty clinics. In this instance, you will receive a bill from St. Francis Memorial Hospital for the facility fee and a bill from the specialty physician for the physician fee.
When will I get my bill?
St. Francis Memorial Hospital and Dinklage Medical Clinic bill your insurance company or any responsible third parties before sending you a final bill. Once payments have been received from any third party payors, the remaining balance will be billed to you on a statement. It may be a month or more before the Hospital and/or Clinic receives payment from your insurance company. Once you receive your statement, please pay your balance promptly or call the Patient Financial Counselor at 402-372-4029 to set up a payment plan. We have various payment options including cash; check; credit card (VISA, MasterCard, and Discover accepted); short-term, interest-free payment plans; automatic bank withdrawal and charity care.
Why am I being billed when I have insurance?
Many insurance companies have amounts which you must pay. These are called deductibles, co-payments or co-insurance payments. If your insurance plan requires you to pay a deductible, co-payment or co-insurance, the balance will be billed to you after the insurance company pays. You will also be billed for any other amounts not covered by your insurance. If you have a question about why your insurance company did not pay part of a claim, you should call your health insurance company directly (the number is likely to be on your insurance card or explanation of benefits letter you received from your insurance company).
What if I do not have health insurance? What are my options?
If you do not have health insurance, please contact our Patient Financial Counselor at 402-372-4029 prior to your scheduled service if possible. The Patient Financial Counselor will discuss the different options available for payment of your bill. If the procedure/surgery is elective, payment in full will be required before the procedure/surgery is performed.
What is my balance going to be after insurance pays?
Insurance companies generally provide details as to the amount you are responsible for on an explanation of benefits (EOB). You should receive an EOB from your insurance company at the same time they make payment to us. The EOB will detail if there is any amount due from you such as a deductible, co-insurance or co-payment. This information can usually be found in your benefits enrollment brochure. We will verify and file insurance claims on your behalf. We will also assist in obtaining reimbursement; however, if your insurance company fails to meet its obligation within a reasonable period of time, we may notify you and request that you contact the insurance company to assist in obtaining payment. Payment for services not covered by insurance is due upon receipt, as are deductibles, coinsurance, co-payments and/or personal items. Please contact Patient Accounting if you need further assistance.
When is payment of my bill expected?
Payment in full, or commitment of payment, is expected when the service is rendered. There are payment options available if you are unable to pay in full.
Which methods can I use to pay my bill?
St. Francis Memorial Hospital and Dinklage Medical Clinic accept payments made by cash, check, money order and credit cards. The credit cards we currently accept are Visa, MasterCard, and Discover. Payments may be made:
By Mail: Return the top portion of your statement with your check, money order or credit card.
In Person: Stop by our facility to make a payment in person.
By Phone: Credit card payments can be made by calling 402-372-2404.
By Automatic Bank Withdrawal: Payments can be automatically withdrawn from your checking or savings account on a monthly basis. Contact our Patient Financial Counselor at 402-372-4029 to set up the withdrawal on a monthly basis.
How will my payment be applied?
Your payment will be applied to the account with the oldest date of service unless you specify an account number and date of service to which payments should be applied. Indicate the account number and date of service you would like the payment to be applied to by writing them on your check or on the portion of the statement that you return with your payment.
What do I do if I can’t pay my bill in full?
St. Francis Memorial Hospital and Dinklage Medical Clinic offer many payment options, including monthly payment installments and charity care. Please contact us to discuss your situation. Don¿t ignore the bill or send in less than the full payment without contacting us. Making less than a full payment without making prior arrangements with the Patient Financial Counselor can cause your bill to progress through our collections process. This may include transferring your account to a collection agency which may show up on your credit report. To discuss your bill and payment options, please call the Patient Financial Counselor at 402-372-4029 anytime between 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Who can I call with questions about my bill?
Patient Accounting is available to help you with your billing and payment questions. If you have questions before, during or after your visit, please call the Patient Financial Counselor at extension 4229 if you are in the facility or 402-372-4029 from outside the facility from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
What is an Explanation of Benefits (EOB)?
Your insurance company will send you an EOB. In short, the EOB is a detailed listing of how your insurance company processed your claim or bill. It specifically will detail any deductible, co-payment, coinsurance, non-covered or denied items and the balance owed by you. An EOB will be mailed to you and also to St. Francis Memorial Hospital or Dinklage Medical Clinic.
What is a deductible?
A deductible is a set dollar amount which you must pay before insurance will begin reimbursement for hospital charges. A deductible can be set for either an individual or an entire family. Deductibles vary by insurance plan.
What is a co-payment?
A co-payment is a type of cost-sharing arrangement under which you typically pay a specified flat amount per visit (e.g. $25 per clinic visit, $100 per inpatient hospital stay, or $100 per emergency room visit) with your insurance company paying the remainder.
What is coinsurance?
Coinsurance is the portion of the cost of an insurance plan’s covered services that you pay. Co-insurance is usually a percentage of charges, such as 10% or 20%. For example, if you had $1,000 in charges and your insurance plan stated that you were responsible for co-insurance of 20% you would owe 20% of $1,000 or $200. Your insurance would pay the remaining $800.