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Financial Assistance for Medical Bills - Understanding and Accessing Financial Assistance Programs

Financial Assistance for Medical Bills is given by the government or organizations to help the beneficiaries to pay their hospital bills and medical expenses. Usually, the prioritized individuals with this assistance are those who belong to low-income and poor communities, senior citizens, children, and persons with disabilities.

The main goal of Financial Assistance for Medical Bills is to clear the payment of the patients in a hospital and to provide the needs of the beneficiary related to his/her health or medical service, especially for those who undergo extensive and painful medical procedures such as operation and therapies as it requires a huge amount of money.

Also, the program avoids the patients having depts just to pay for medical expenses. For the patients, this assistance will aid them a lot, especially with financial needs as the markets and demand for hospital expenses continue to rise as a result of the pandemic.

Generally, this assistance is 100% free and does not need to be repaid as long as the funds were used in terms of medical services and fees of the beneficiaries.

Different Programs for Financial Assistance for Medical Bills

Medicare

A federally funded program by the government aiming to help individuals aged 65 and above, and individuals with age 65 and below with disability or permanent kidney failure. The program helps patients to pay their medical bills. This means that the program does not cover 100% of the medical services payments of its beneficiaries.

The program is divided into three sections, they are the following:

  • Medicare Part A – covers the patient’s nursing facility, hospital stay, hospice care, and limited home health care.
  • Medicare Part B - covers the patient’s doctor’s services, medical supplies, and preventive services.
  • Medicare Part D – includes prescription drugs such as shots and vaccines.

Medicare Qualifications

If you’re 65 years old or older

  1. Must be a U.S Citizen or permanent legal resident in the U.S.
  2. You should be receiving Social Security or retirement benefits.
  3. You and your spouse should be government employees.

If you’re younger than 65

  • If you do have Lou Gehrig’s disease, also known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), you are automatically qualified for the program.
  • You must be qualified for Social Security disability benefits.
  • You should be receiving a disability pension from Railroad Retirement Board

Medicaid

A government program that provides health care and financially assists with the medical bills and services of individuals who belong to low-income and poor communities. It’s the leading insurance provider in the United States that assists more than 70 million program beneficiaries.

Medicaid Qualifications:

  • The eligibility requirement varies in your state and is based on your age, income, household size, and disability.
  • You can check if you’re eligible within your state or at the official website.

Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)

This program assists individuals or families who did not qualify for Medicaid but also cannot afford private insurance. It is aligned with Medicaid and supports families with children with medical bills or expenses.

Children’s Health Insurance Program

  • The eligibility requirement varies on your state, check your eligibility at the healthcare website.

Financial Assistance Programs from Other Organizations

HealthWell Foundation

Offers underinsured access to gain quality health care. The main objective of this foundation is to give financial support for prescription copays, health insurance premiums and deductibles, pediatric treatment, and travel costs for medical care of their respective beneficiaries.

  • You must have insurance that covers your medication.
  • Should meet their standard income guidelines.
  • You receive treatment from the United States.

Patient Access Network Foundation

It gives assistance to underinsured individuals who battle life-threatening or rare and chronic diseases. The foundation provides financial assistance with copays, travel costs, and health insurance premiums for eligible individuals.

  • Should be under the U.S poverty line
  • Must have insurance and receive treatment for the disease.
  • You receive treatment from the United States.

Patient Advocate Foundation

The foundation provides no-cost services to their working case managers in order to lessen the financial stress of the patients with medical expenses. They give copay and financial grants to the program beneficiaries.

  1. Must have a chronic or life-threatening disease
  2. Should be a U.S Citizen who receives treatment in the U.S

Requirements to Get Financial Assistance

The requirements to get Financial Assistance for Medical Bills depend on the program that you’re applying for. But here are some required documents for the application process.

  • Proof of date of birth (birth certificate)
  • Proof of U.S. citizenship (can be a passport, driver’s license, birth certificate, green card, or employment authorization card)
  • Proof of your Income (retirement benefits or Supplemental Security Income
  • Proof of resources and residence (property, life insurance, rent receipt, or your landlord’s statement)
  • Proof of medication
  • Insurance Card
  • Hospital bills and medical expenses.
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