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Tips to Help you Cope with Rising Medical Costs

Tips to help you deal with rising medical costs!

On June 7th, I will be speaking to senior citizens about how to face monetary hardships at the Huntington Library [Register for the event here]! Post- retirement money management skills, budget development and debt and credit awareness as well as proven solutions to ease the financial stress seniors may face due to steep cuts in household income and dwindling social security/income will be the topic of the event!  Many seniors are also concerned that they will not be able to afford the extra medicial costs that come with aging on top of the financial burdens they are already dealing with.  Senior citzens are not alone, millions of Americans are faced with rising medical costs and are trying to learn to cope with the added costs of insurance premiums and medicial bills.

Since medical costs are a major problem for the millions of Americans unemployed and/or uninsured and even the insured Americans are facing large deductibles, what can you do to ease this burden on your own? According to an article in the New York Times, a study published by the Kaiser Family Foundation shows that the average annual premium for family coverage through an employer reached $15,073 in 2011, an increase of 9% over the previous year.

Don’t let your medical expenses cause you to steer clear from visits to the doctor or necessary medical procedures.

Here are some tips to consider:

 

1) Negotiate. According to an article ABC News, it is important to know medical bills are never set in stone. Hospital bills typically include a number of service fees including X-rays and anesthesiology. Contact the different service providers, chances are one of them will help you out. Also consider being open and honest with your doctor about your financial issues. It may be personal but a doctor’s mission is to help their patients-- see if you can work out a lower cost with your doctor.

2) Be wary of specialty credit cards for medical, dental and vet bills. Some of these cards operate at a much higher interest rate. Read the fine print and confirm the terms before agreeing to accept one of these credit cards.

3) Arrange a payment plan. Most doctors and hospitals offer payment plans-- some even without interest. Agree on a plan you can afford and make sure you stick to it!

4) Be proactive! Stay on top of your health to avoid unforeseen and sudden doctor’s visit and bills. Make sure you keep up with your regular doctor visits. It may seem unnecessary if you’re feeling healthy, but this is the best way to maintain your health. Your doctor may notice changes to your health before you do and in many cases early detection of illnesses can be your best defense, both for your body and your wallet. You know what they say about an ounce of prevention!

5) Only go to doctors in your insurance’s networks. Going to doctors outside of your plan’s network can cost you a huge bundle that is all out of pocket. There are plenty of great doctors within your network, and even if you have to “shop around” to find one that best suits you, it will be completely worth it.

6) Stay healthy! Exercise daily and always eat healthy to maximize your health. Even just going for leisurely walks around your neighborhood is a great way to get some fresh air and work your muscles. Eat right, research preventive foods to help reduce medical risks.

 

We know some medical issues are out of your hands but in the just in case scenario, start an emergency medical fund. Contribute X amount of dollars each week or month to create a cushion for yourself and your family in the case of unexpected medical or dental issues should arise.


What do you do to cope with rising medical costs? Comment below and let us know!

 

Leslie H. Tayne, founder of The Law Offices of Leslie H. Tayne, P.C., assists consumers and individuals with the resolution of their unsecured debts. The firm's flexible and well established policies and procedures have helped thousands of individuals lead a debt-free life. For more information, call 1-631-470-8204 or visit www.attorney-newyork.com.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Ranger Sewer May 30, 2012 at 12:12 PM
Get goverment out of chosing what Health Insurance Companies can be avilable in NY and let all the Health Insurance companies compete for the business. Why is there many more Health Insurance Companies ALLOWED to sell Health Insurance in PA then NY ? Goverment. NY Goverment does not want low cost Health Insurance for the people in NY to choose from. NY Goverment wants to be the "Answer" to all our problems and NOT the person who is paying the bill. NY Goverment wants to have as many people under their control to get whoever they control to vote for them to keep them in power. And they wonder why people leave NY ? I HAD to open up shop in PA because of the high taxes and the price of Health Insurance( And it's HALF of what it was in NY). Everything is much lower OUTSIDE of NY.
Denise Botiglione May 30, 2012 at 02:18 PM
My mom needs dental care. she has some EDP discount card. Not much of a help at all. Can anyone suggest a dental plan she can join. She is a senior.
Jerry King May 30, 2012 at 03:11 PM
Denise, you might consider the Stony Brook University School of Dental Medicine for your mom. From personal experience, the school is very helpful and offers high quality dental care at reduced cost. Screening appointments are scheduled by calling (631) 632-8989. http://dentistry.stonybrookmedicine.edu/dentalcarecenter/becomepatient Jerry King
Denise Botiglione May 30, 2012 at 04:06 PM
Thanks so much Jerry!

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