Billing, Insurance, Financial Assistance
In the Patient Financial Services department, we understand how confusing and frustrating medical billing can be. Please be assured we are here to help answer your questions and resolve any issues that you may have during this process. Feel free to contact us for questions relating to either the clinic or hospital at 308.254.8778.
The billing process begins the day you receive services. Each time you register it is important that you tell us if you carry healthcare insurance and provide us with updated insurance cards. Accurate insurance will expedite the filing of your claims with your insurance company for payment.
Any co-pays, estimated deductible amount or co-insurance due will be collected at each visit. For non-clinic visits, payment plans are available. Within 12 weeks of your visit, you should receive an explanation of benefits (EOBs) or remittance advice (RAs) from your insurance company. Shortly thereafter, you will be receiving your first statement. Please compare the EOB or RA you receive from your insurance company to the “Patent Responsibility” portion of the statement sent to you. The balance you owe according to your EOB or RA and the balance you owe according to your Sidney Regional Medical Center should equal. If they are different, for the hospital please contact Patient Financial Services for assistance regarding questions at 308.254.5825. Most insurance carriers require that professional fees be billed separately from facility charges.
Private pay patients
Patients that are not covered by insurance are known as “True Private Pay” patients. Statements for services at Sidney Regional Medical Center will be received approximately 30–45 days from your date of service. Balances are paid in full within 45 days of receiving your services, you may be eligible for a “True Private Pay” discount.
SRMC is committed to the provision of healthcare services to all persons in need of medical attention regardless of ability to pay. It is the policy of SRMC to treat all patients/guarantors equally, fairly and consistently.
SRMC maintains that it is the individual’s responsibility to seek assistance from outside agencies before requesting charity care.
Charity Care, known also as “SRMC Financial Adjustment Program,” is generally secondary to all other financial resources available to the patient. These include: Group or individual medical plans; workers’ compensation; Medicare, Medicaid or medical assistance programs; other state, federal or military programs; third party liability situations (e.g., auto accidents or personal injuries), or any other situation in which another person or entity may have a legal responsibility to pay for the costs of medical services. During the initial request period, SRMC staff may assist the patient &/or guarantor with other sources for funding, including Medicaid.
Specifically identified cases may be presumed eligible for charitable assistance and classified without a completed application or assessment. Examples of these cases are: patient is deceased with no known estate or spouse; patients with current eligibility under county or state medical indigent services administered by county or state facilities; patient is homeless and without resources.
Percent of charity will be based on household income and size, real estate, personal property and investment equity, with credit to be given for already existing medical loans, in comparison to the current year Federal Poverty Guidelines. Free care may be given to households that qualify are at 100 percent of the federal poverty level. Discounted care may be given at up to 300 percent of the federal poverty level.
- Methods for applying shall be provided by completing application over the phone, in person, online or via mailed application or eligibility may be presumed based on apparent need. Any person wishing to be considered shall have 14 business days to complete and return the application, and any requested supporting documentation, when applicable.
- Patients may be considered for charity care for emergent, urgent or diagnostic service for accounts with current patient due balances and accounts within six months following the application approval date.
- Charity care policy shall be publicized and available at patient registration, during the patient stay, after the patient stay and on the hospital website.
- If there is knowledge, evidence or questionable information within the application process, supporting documentation will be required before eligibility is determined. Supporting documentation shall include, but is not limited to, current year W-2’s and tax return, vehicle registration, property tax evaluations.
- Patients with a recurring bad debt history, unemployed, uninsured shall be verbally advised of the charity care program at the time of admissions and/or before being sent to collections. When a patient is identified on a pre-collect report, attempts shall be made to contact the patient to advise them of charity care.
- Patients must be residents of Cheyenne or Deuel County and/or a 20 mile radius of Sidney.
If the patient is emergently admitted to inpatient or observation through the emergency room, the residency requirement may be waived by the CFO or Revenue Cycle Director on a case by case basis.
Accounts that have gone to collections and are in active collection processes at Collection Agencies do not qualify for Charity Care.
- Accounts that have gone to collections and have later been deemed uncollectable by a Collection Agency and have been at the collection agency for less than one year shall be eligible for Charity Care at 100 percent with exception to Medicare accounts.
- Accounts that enter into bankruptcy are eligible for charity care at 100 percent within one year of bankruptcy.
- Patients can reapply for charity care, on accounts that originally did not meet eligibility, in the case of a major life events, such as, divorce, death, birth of a child. The reapplication shall not retro back to include any type of refund or reimbursement on payments already made on account.
- Patients who qualify for charity care after payments have been posted to qualifying accounts will not be eligible for refunds on those payments based on their the approval of charity care.
- Medicare patients who owe noncovered, self-administered drug charges after an outpatient service may be eligible for charity care without regard to residential real estate asset ownership based on a review of their income sources.
- All applications shall be processed and approved by a Patient Financial Services Representative.
Charity Care Application
Collaboration with the Finance Committee of the Board of Directors, 2009
IRS Code Section 501; Medicare Fairbilling & Collections Act
Patient billing FAQs
Q: How can I make a payment?
A: We accept the following forms of payment: Cash, Check, Credit Card/Debit (MasterCard, Visa, American Express, Discover), Money Orders and cashier checks:
Option 1 Pay Online: To pay your bill online by credit/debit card, by the new “Pay Online” tab on the website, www.SidneyRMC.com
Option 2 Mail Payment:
SRMC (hospital) 1000 Pole Creek Crossing, Sidney, NE 69162-1714.
Option 3 Pay in Person: Patient Financial Services, 1000 Pole Creek Crossing, Sidney, NE 69162-1714
Q: Do you have any kind of financial assistance?
A: Yes, we offer payment plans, as well as a loan program in conjunction with local banks.
We also have a Financial Adjustment Benefit Program that could reduce or eliminate your bill. This program is based upon federal poverty guidelines. After completing an application, patients who qualify will have a percentage or even their entire bill forgiven. This program is based on a patient’s annual income.
Q: Can I make payment arrangements?
A: Yes, please contact the SRMC Patient Financial Services to discuss payment arrangements.
Q: What’s the minimum payment I can make?
A: The minimum payment will be different for each account and is based upon the total amount of your outstanding balance.
Q: Why do I need to establish an official payment plan?
A: By agreeing to an interest free, no fee, no penalty payment plan, we keep your account internally and keep it from aging out to an outside source, who would charge interest. If you are unable to pay your balance, SRMC has payment options available.
Q: I don’t have insurance, can I get a discount on my bill?
A: If you are able to pay your entire balance within 45 days of receiving your first statement, you may be eligible to receive a discount. The discount will be applied upon receipt of payment in full.
Q: What is the phone number for the collection agency my account was sent to?
A: Sidney Regional Medical Center (hospital) uses Credit Management Services at 308.382.3000, SRMC Physicians Clinic uses Panhandle Collections at 308.632.5210.
What are advanced directives?
Advanced Directives are documents in which you state your choices about medical treatment or name someone to make decisions or choices about your medical treatment if you are unable to make them for yourself. They are called “Advance” Directives because they are signed in advanced to let your doctor and other healthcare providers know your wishes concerning your medical treatment. Nebraska recognizes two forms of Advanced Directives a living will and Power Attorney for Health Care.
Do I have to have an advanced directive?
It is entirely your wish whether you prepare an Advanced Directive. Keep in mind that if you choose not to complete an Advanced Directive there is a greater chance that you will receive more procedures and/or treatments than you may want.
Power of Attorney
What is a power of attorney for health care?
A Power Attorney for Health Care is a legal document which allows you to appoint another person (attorney in fact or agent) to make medical decisions for you if you become temporarily or permanently unable to make decisions for yourself.
Who can be an attorney in fact?
You can select any adult such as your spouse, child, sister, brother, or close friend to be your attorney in fact. This person should be knowledgeable about your wishes, values, religious beliefs and someone you can trust. You may also appoint more than one individual to be your attorney in fact.
When does a power of attorney for healthcare take effect?
The Power Attorney for Healthcare becomes effective when you are temporarily or permanently unable to make your own health care decisions for yourself. It is important to remember that as long as you are able to make your decisions your healthcare providers will rely on you for those decisions.
What is a living will?
A Living Will is a document which tells your doctor and other healthcare providers whether or not you want life sustaining treatments or procedures administered, if you are in a persistent vegetative state or have a terminal condition. It is called “living” because
What is the Five Wishes?
The Five Wishes lets your family and doctors know:
- Who you want to make health care decisions for you when you can't make them
- The kind of medical treatment you want or don't want
- How comfortable you want to be
- How you want people to treat you
- What you want your loved ones to know
Five Wishes is changing the way America talks about and plans for care at the end of life. For more information please contact Annette Krueger at 308.254.5825 or email firstname.lastname@example.org