Dear Valued Patients,
Thank you for taking time to review our Credit Card on File Policy (CCOF). Our decision, here at Silicon Valley Orthopaedics (SVO), to execute this policy is based on optimizing our billing practices, providing more insurance transparency for you, and in turn improving your overall patient experience. With the ever-changing environment in healthcare, in particular the Affordable Care Act and High Deductible Plans (HDHPs), more of the financial responsibility is being shifted to the patient. Even after high deductibles have been met, most insurance carriers will only cover a portion of the total amount billed, which has led to an exponential increase in outstanding patient balances. Mailing out multiple statements for each individual patient encounter has proven to be demanding on resources and personnel. Adopting our Credit Card on File policy and implementing an electronic billing system i.e. electronically sending Explanation of benefits (EOBs), bills, and receipts after each charge straight to your email, allows for our team to focus on improving quality of care and patient outcomes, as opposed to pursuing outstanding balances by mail.
Thank you very much for your understanding.
Does this policy apply to everyone?
All patients with private/commercial insurance are required to keep a credit or debit card on-file. Once we receive the insurance explanation of benefits (EOB) for your visit, we will charge the credit card on file the exact amount as per the EOB that is stated to be patient responsibility. Once charged, we will email you a receipt of payment.
When do I have to pay for services?
Any time you receive medical care, you will be expected to pay in full for your services until your deductible is met and max out-of-pocket limit has been satisfied. If you have a large deductible (HDHP), you may have to pay out of pocket for your visits.
What is a Deductible and How Does It Affect Me?
An annual deductible is the dollar amount you must pay out of pocket during the year for medical expenses before your insurance coverage begins to pay.
For example, if your policy has a $2,000 deductible, you must pay the first $2,000 of medical expenses before the insurance company begins to pay for any services.
This works just like the deductible for your car insurance or homeowner’s insurance policy does.
When does a deductible begin?
Your deductible begins at the start of your plan year. Most plan years begin either January 1 or July 1, but plans can start on any date.
How will I know when my deductible has been met?
You can call your insurance company at any time to check on how much of your deductible has been met and some insurance companies have this information available online. Every time you receive medical services, you will receive notification from your insurance company with how much they paid or did not pay if the amount went to your deductible when they send you an Explanation of Benefits (EOB.)
But I always pay my bills, why me?
We need to be consistent and apply a universal policy to all patients. We have wonderful patients and we know that most of you pay your balances. Unfortunately, this is not always the case.
How will I know how much you are going to charge me?
You will receive a letter in the mail (or e-mail) from your Insurance carrier that explains how much of your office visit they pay and how much you pay. This is called an Explanation of Benefits (EOB.) This letter tells you exactly, according to your health insurance coverage, how much of your health care bill is your responsibility and how much is the responsibility of your insurance to pay.
We receive the same Explanation of Benefits (EOB) that you do. Most Insurances will send your EOB prior to us receiving our copy. It arrives about 10-20 days after your appointment has been billed. We look at each EOB carefully and determine what your insurance has determined as patient responsibility. This is the same way we normally determine how much to send you a statement for in the mail.
When do I give you my credit card?
At your next transaction, we will swipe your debit/credit card with an encrypted reader that will securely upload your credit card number into the Onstaff and return the card to you. With the encrypted reader, we will never see all the numbers of your credit card. You can deliver your credit card information over the phone or by mail, but the most secure way is in person through the encrypted reader.
My High-Deductible Health Plan has a Health Savings Account (HSA) Card. Can I keep my HSA card on file?
Yes, you can keep your HSA card on file, however, we will require an additional card to be kept on file should the funds in your HSA account become insufficient.
What if I need to dispute my bill?
We will always work with you to understand if there has been a mistake. We will refund your credit card if we or your insurance company has made a billing error. We will only charge the amount that we are instructed to by your insurance carrier as shown in the EOB they send to us. This is the same way we determine how much to send you a bill for in the mail.
What if I have more questions?
Our friendly billing professionals are happy to speak with you about your account.