A strategy routinely used by insurance companies to gain deep discounts on the list price of medical procedures can now be used by individual consumers to lower costs for yourself or your family. What’s a bill negotiation service, and how can it help you save money?

List Prices, Negotiated Prices and the Difference

When determining how much money you will pay for a medical procedure, you deal with two types of pricing presented by the care provider.

The first is the list price of the procedure. It is the price the hospital or other facility seeks to receive when entering into a negotiation with the insurance company or other organization. The negotiated price, on the other hand, is the final price that is negotiated,charged, and often significantly lower.

Until recently, this negotiating power rested solely in the power of entities such as insurance companies and government organizations. Self-payers and those with large deductibles were generally stuck paying either all, or a significant portion, of their bills without much opportunity for negotiation.

But as the drive for medical price transparency and the ability to comparison shop has started placing more power in the hands of medical consumers, this is starting to change. By using medical bill negotiation services, individuals like you are saving significantly on medical care.

Bill Negotiators: Standing Up for Your Pocketbook

Organizations such as the South Florida Utilization Review (SFUR) routinely go to bat for clients facing high medical bills and can often get their clients a discount of over half off. They, and other members of the National Association of Independent Review Organizations, regularly help clients even if their bill is partially paid by insurance.

To give an example of how an organization such as SFUR can help you, a typical CAT scan at a Denver-area hospital costs an average of $1,012 ( be aware that this varies widely by facility!). By submitting your bill for review by SFUR or a similar organization, you give yourself an opportunity to save up to $500—and possibly more.

SFUR will call the facility’s billing department, negotiate a final price, and help you arrange payment, all with only a small fee attached.

SFUR membership is free, allowing you to learn about their services and be ready for any time you are faced with high medical expenses. You can sign up here.

Nothing to Lose, Serious Savings to Gain

Since many of these bill negotiation services are free to join, you risk nothing by joining and learning about their services. Using them can save you hundreds or even thousands of dollars. Make sure to sign up for free on this page: http://www.hsaforamerica.com/member-benefits-bill-review.htm.