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DCA wants to collect debt on behalf of hospital


barnicle
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I had treatment in hospital and it was covered under my private medical insurance.

 

I left it at that with the hospital and have not heard since, I had a letter from ICON COllections on saturday stating that i owe £200, and then the DCA at the door today and he left a note with his name and number and the note saying it was urgent to reply and to quote a reference number no company name informing me of where he was from.

 

I have not bothered but can only assume that this is the hospital chasing me 3 years on.

 

I believe this to have been paid by my insurance company at the time, and cannot remember the details of the insurers as i have some memory loss.

 

Is this debt enforcable or still live, i have not replied or acknowledge any correspondance. what should i do?

 

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Would the £200 possibly be some form of excess or maybe take home medication that would not have been covered by your PMI.

 

I ask because I used to work in one of the theatre as an assistant in one of the private hospitals, it was not uncommon for this particular hospital to ask you to pay your insurers the excess before admission to the hospital, having been a patient in a different private hospital, this was not the case, you settled your excess at the end.

 

Are you still covered with your PMI? Could you possibly check what amount was settled by your insurer and ask them to investigate why you are being sent demands for £200, it may be a mistake on their part.

All my knowledge has been gained from personal experience and the sharing of advice from fellow members.

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As with any contact from a DCA demanding money, it is essential to get them to prove that the money is owed.

 

In this case, it might be an insurance excess. However, it could also be a charge for something that the insurer didn't cover - ambulance services are a favourite.

 

There is also the possibility that it could be the result of an error by the hospital. When I was involved in air-ambulance work and travel insurance, we used a company to check all foreign hospital bills; they usually found at least one error, and often many. Curiously, the errors always seemed to be in favour of the hospital. The audit company checked everything. If the doctor claimed to have visited 10 times, they checked that there were 10 entries signed by the doctor in the notes; if a medicine was to be taken in the form of one tablet three times a day for seven days, they made sure that 21 tablets were charged for, and no more. Every dressing, procedure and test was checked. Private hospitals itemise everything, so it's easy to check, and it was remarkable how often they overcharged or claimed for items not supplied (or not recorded). However, some hospitals, having been caught out, would then try to pursue the patient for the difference. I don't know if this is happens here, but nothing would surprise me.

 

The most bizarre thing I saw was a US hospital charging $10/day for 'hydration replacement' - changing the bedside jug of water!

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