There is so much talk and endless meetings to try to ease surprise medical billings. Stop all the "legalese" and just put in a contract clause that says that if your company or agency contracts with a health facility, they are in network. Period. You work for the facility, you are in network.

For example: a woman goes for a mammogram and she even double checks at the desk that the clinic is "in network." Then months later, a bill arrives. Yes, the mammogram itself is in network, but the doctor that reads the mammogram isn't. This type of scam has happened to me and a number of friends.

This business about notifying a patient-after they are already in the hospital that some of the staff are out of network-is still criminal. If you are working in a facility, you are in that facility's network. Period. Same idea about physicians and other health care providers who don't take Medicare or Medicaid patients. You work in the US of A, you accept the insurance.

As a medical student you benefited from government assistance in some way. As a practitioner in this country, you benefit from the government in many ways. Also, if a patient does not have insurance, stop trying to rip them off for much more than the insurance companies would pay. If they can't pay for insurance, they certainly can't afford your inflated bills. These policies would make the maze of healthcare billing and insurance much easier on everyone.

LESLIE KENNEDY

CHRISTIANSBURG

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