Part II of What a CT Scan Costs

As a patient receiving any type of medical care you have a right to receive correct information about your tests, costs, and medical information. But what you don’t know is that what you are told —- and what actually happens with regards to your care or medical bill can be vastly different.

Here are some Healthcare Myths.   And What YOU Need to DO TODAY to protect yourself or your loved ones!

I. Myth #1: Your Doctor is Always Right:
First of all, just drop the notion that everything will be correct with regards to your healthcare. Doctor’s don’t always have the right answers or make the correct diagnoses, tests are not always done correctly, nor are results that you receive always accurate.

This is not written in an attempt to scare you it is simply written so that the next time you have an ongoing medical issue that has not been resolved and you find yourself saying to yourself or others “but the doctor told me the test result was ________” that you won’t stop searching for the answer or the correct diagnosis.

Second, third, or even more options or opinions from other medical providers can be helpful in certain situations.  There was a staff member here who saw nine different doctors who told her that “nothing was wrong” until she finally ended up at a major medical center and got a proper diagnosis.

Alternatively, there have been some people who have even been misdiagnosed with serious illnesses such as cancer —- Who DON’T have Cancer, so second opinions and repeating certain labwork if you’re told you have a serious illness can also be useful for certain patients.

2. Myth #2: Costs for the same procedure in my area should be similar, I don’t need to shop around. This is also not true. Costs can vary widely for the exact same test or procedure. In our original article about what a CT scan costs, we profiled a patient’s story about getting costs varying from $250.00 – $1200.00 for the exact same type of CAT scan!

And no, in this case, the equipment wasn’t different, nor were the quality of the providers who were reading the results any different. In some cases, machine quality varies and so providers market their scans or equipment to patients as being “the latest and greatest” etc. But in this test scenario, we checked prices using the same criteria and still received such broad ranges in the costs for a CT Scan.

3. Myth # 3: My Bill Will Be Correct Because I checked in Advance What the Cost Should Be:

”If I’m checking costs for a medical procedure up front with the billing office—then  I don’t have to worry about what amount shows up on my bill.”

Not the case. In the patient, who checked with different Austin Texas providers prior to having a CT scan, he received quotes ranging from $250.00 to 1200.00 for his CT scan of the abdomen.  He chose the facility with the $250.00 cost, as you can imagine. However, when the bill actually came, the billed amount to the patient was over $1100.00!  When he called the billing office he got some kind of explanation saying that the wrong code was used, and then received a corrected bill for the lower amount.

Now, can you imagine if you are the caregiver for “grandma” and grandma goes in for testing and you get the bills and you are billed up to 4 times of the cost of the procedure, and you simply “pay the bill?”

So regardless of whether you or someone else in your family is receiving care, it is important to designate someone not only to be the patient “advocate” to go on all medical appointments, ask questions, and to make sure that the patient’s medical needs are attended to, but it’s also important to have a designated person who is responsible for overseeing the bills regarding testing.

Double check everything before simply writing a check to pay for healthcare procedures. 

You may be able to keep your bank balance healthier as well as your body, if you don’t assume that everything you’re told with regards to your care or the cost of your care is correct!