Last year I wrote about checking yourself out of the hospital when I accidentally came across a paragraph about that in my insurance manual. If you have ever been in the hospital and wanted to leave, you were most likely told that your insurance won’t pay the bill if you do that. I wanted to put a copy of what is in this year’s manual and keep it updated so someone doesn’t look at my first article and think it was an old policy. I have been meaning to do this post since I first got my new manual last year, and after writing about the withholding insulin searches yesterday, I figured I should just get it done. This is from my insurance company’s 2012 manual:
“Your insurance won’t pay” has been a standard line in hospitals for years. Someone I worked with years ago once told me her father-in-law was told that when he wanted to leave the hospital on his own. He left and his insurance paid the bill. I did it back in 2006 when my foot was infected and I was also told my insurance wouldn’t pay. My insurance did pay the bill.
As I stated in the first article, if you are going to check yourself out of the hospital, you need to have a plan. If you have an infection, you need antibiotics and can’t just walk out of the hospital without having a plan for how to get those antibiotics. Stop and think about the things that you need to get healthy and come up with a plan on how you would get them if you leave the hospital. When I checked myself out, I had an appointment with a doctor in Pittsburgh. I went to that appointment expecting to be admitted to the hospital from his office, but he gave me a one week retrieve. When I walked out of the hospital, I had a plan and already had an appointment with a new doctor; I didn’t just walk out without knowing what I was going to do. In my case, if I had not walked out of that particular hospital, I wouldn’t have my leg today so it did turn out to be a very good decision.
If it is just the doctor that you don’t like, you have the right to fire that doctor. It doesn’t matter if they are a private practice doctor or a hospitalist, you don’t’ have to see that particular doctor if you don’t like them. If you have a good doctor that you trust but they don’t go to that hospital, call and talk to them to see if they have any suggestions for you. Don’t just complain to a nurse, they really aren’t going to do anything to help you. Demand to speak to someone higher up the food chain, even the director of the hospital if you have to. People in management will normally be more concerned about your complaints than a nurse on the floor. If it is just the whole hospital that you find crappy, them you have the right to be transferred to a different hospital.