A hospital stay in New York can be very expensive, and the number of charges for just a couple of days as an inpatient can be mind-blowing. If you’ve ever looked closely at an itemized medical bill, you’ll know how difficult these charges are to keep track of. Some unscrupulous medical providers take advantage of the system by overcharging and committing various types of health care fraud. Even if your insurance covers these additional expenses, health care fraud still has an effect on you in the long run. Health care fraud causes health insurance premiums to go up and can lower quality of care.
Types of health care fraud
Medical providers can commit health care fraud in many different ways, but the result is usually a higher bill. Some examples of health care fraud include:
- Phantom billing for services you never received
- Double billing for the same service
- Unbundling services in order to double-charge patients
- Billing for more expensive services than the ones you received
In rare cases, fraudsters impersonating professional health care providers can commit health care fraud. A person using false credentials to provide health care services that they are not licensed to provide would be committing fraud no matter what they billed patients for.
Prescription medication fraud
Fraud involving prescription medication is a rampant problem, partially due to the addictive nature of many prescription drugs. Some dishonest doctors will create forged prescriptions or divert legal prescriptions to the wrong person. Health care fraud may involve a clinic where prescriptions are readily provided without questions asked.
What to do if you suspect health care fraud
If you think that you have been overcharged for a hospital stay or a doctor visit, it’s important that you obtain an itemized medical bill. Asking your health insurance provider about suspicious charges on your bill may reveal whether any fraud was committed.