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Frequently Asked Questions


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Frequently Asked Questions

At the Regional Medical Center, you can now pay your bill using our online payment form.

What is the billing process at the Regional Medical Center?

Review the steps below for basic billing procedures. If you have any questions, please contact the Regional Medical Center’s (RMC) Patient Account Services Office located in the hospital near the Patient Registration Entrance.

Step 1

The patient receives services at the Regional Medical Center.

Step 2

Based on the insurance information provided at time of registration, RMC’s Patient Account Services Office begins the billing and collection processes and sends the statement electronically to the insurance provider.

Step 3

The insurance company determines the payment amount, the patient’s responsibility and pays the hospital accordingly. The hospital repeats the billing process with secondary insurance if applicable. Once insurance payment process is complete, the hospital bills the patient.

Delays occur when the insurance company does not resolve the account balance in a timely manner. RMC’s Patient Account Services Office follows up with the insurance companies if they have not paid. The patient may receive a letter or phone call asking for assistance in getting his/her claim paid. Most frequently, the insurance company needs additional information from the patient before processing the claim. It is very important for a patient to respond promptly to any insurance inquiry.

Additional information to assist with your bills:

How can I pay the balance of my bill?

The Regional Medical Center offers several ways to pay your bill. Payments may be made with cash or check. We also accept Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover charge cards. If you cannot pay the balance of your bill, monthly payment options are available.

Where can I pay my bill?

Payments are accepted at RMC's Patient Account Services Office located in the hospital near the Patient Registration Entrance. You can also pay online by clicking this secure link and filling out the Online Bill Pay form.

What if I cannot pay my bill?

Contact Patient Account Services, 803-395-2257 or 1-800-476-3377, ext. 2257, to inquire about financial assistance or payment plans. Or click here for RMC's Financial Assistance webpage.

Why is there so much time between the date of service and when the patient first receives a bill?

Your bill begins its journey through the payment system almost immediately after discharge or receiving services. Multiple steps must be accomplished before initiating a patient’s bill. Insurance providers first must evaluate each claim and issue payment before the Regional Medical Center can provide an accurate bill showing patient amount due. Some other factors that may contribute to a delayed billing are longer length of stay than expected, seriousness of illness, or patient treatment. In general, most bills are issued to the primary insurance within 5-10 days once the primary insurance pays. The secondary insurance (if applicable) is billed within 1-2 days after receiving payment.

Why do I receive several bills as the result of one hospital encounter?

If you have certain tests or procedures during your hospital service, you will receive multiple bills. For instance, if you have surgery which requires pathology services, you will receive a bill for professional interpretation fees from the physician (pathologist) who evaluates the sample, as well as a bill from the hospital for technical services including operating room time and other outpatient or inpatient services. You also will receive a bill from the surgeon and anesthesiologist. Likewise, diagnostic imaging (X-ray) services (such as mammography) result in a bill from the radiologist for professional interpretation fees as well as a bill from the hospital for technical service fees.

Why are the Emergency Department charges so high?

Services offered through the Emergency Department of any hospital are typically among the most costly healthcare services available. Although Emergency Departments are sometimes used to deliver non-emergent care (for example an earache which develops on weekends or holidays), Emergency Departments must maintain adequate staffing and access to specific treatment options in order to care for true emergencies. The Regional Medical Center requires specific procedures to ensure patient safety within the healthcare setting. Immediate medical attention availability is required in an emergency facility, which dictates adequate staffing and accelerated care.

Why has my bill been turned over to a collection agency?

The Regional Medical Center utilizes outside services to assist in contacting patients to resolve payment delays with the insurance or an outstanding balance. We recognize there are numerous circumstances that may prevent or delay balance resolution. The Regional Medical Center’s extended Patient Account Services Office is not a collection agency. However, old accounts may be released to collection agencies when our efforts fail to collect the balance on the account, which is a reasonable and acceptable business practices within the industry.

Does the Regional Medical Center offer discounts?

The Regional Medical Center does offer Prompt Pay Discounts to all patients who pay their bill in full within 30 days of notice of personal balance due after the insurance payment. Patients choosing self payment are also eligible for the discount. The Federal or State government does not permit discounts to any beneficiaries of their programs (such as Medicare).

What responsibilities do I have when dealing with my insurance company when they need other insurance information?

Insurance companies have specific requirements before processing claims and often contact you for coordination of your benefits. They may ask about other insurance you or other family members may have and need to verify your current information. They often send questionnaires to confirm any changes. Generally, they will not process your claim without your response to their inquiries. Therefore, it is important to respond to your insurance company’s questions in a timely manner. This will help move the billing process forward.

Why is certain insurance coverage accepted at one hospital but not another?

The Regional Medical Center has negotiated contracts with numerous managed care providers; however, the lists differ between facilities. Most insurance plans are accepted at the Regional Medical Center’s facilities, although there are some differences in the group of managed care providers with whom each hospital has agreements.

Why is my insurance accepted by the hospital but not by some physicians?

Physicians and physician groups are typically not employees of the Regional Medical Center. While some of them (radiologists, pathologists, anesthesiologists and some others) provide services ONLY to patients who receive those services inside a hospital, these physicians operate as independent business entities. Consequently, each physician group must negotiate an agreement with the individual insurance providers, as does the hospital. Those lists sometimes differ and change over time. Contact Patient Account Services directly at the Regional Medical Center 803-395-2257 (or 1-800-476-3377, ext. 2257) for the most current listing.

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