While medical treatment is crucial following a car accident, many victims may worry about how they'll be able to pay for it as they begin the recovery process. However, there are several ways to help cover medical treatment and ensure that the recovery process is smooth without leading to financial hardship.
Here are some of the best ways to get medical bills paid following a car accident.
For a majority of car accidents, personal injury protection (PIP) will apply. PIP insurance is a type of coverage that's included in an auto insurance policy, and it can pay for most medical bills that result when treating an injury following an accident.
In the event of an accident in which someone is mildly or seriously injured, there may be some out-of-pocket payments for certain items such as prescribed painkillers, but PIP could pay for these to the owner of the vehicle involved in the accident. The first medical bills that go through PIP insurance will be the first that the insurance covers. These could be medical services rendered later but processed faster than initial expenses.
Another option is health insurance, which is standard for covering medical expenses as they're incurred. While certain expenses may fall under health insurance, PIP insurance may help cover the rest.
Some of the costs that health insurance may be able to cover include:
Emergency response and ambulance fees
X-rays and surgical procedures
Doctor appointments and visits to the hospital
Dental procedures or prostheses required following an accident
Health insurance may also be able to cover pedestrian injuries or those sustained while riding a bicycle following a collision with a vehicle.
Medicare or Medicaid
For accident victims age 65 or older, Medicare may help cover expenses. For children, individuals with disabilities, seniors, and others who qualify for federally-assisted income maintenance payments, Medicaid is also available.
People on either Medicare or Medicaid will have certain responsibilities as well as rights regarding making payments toward medical expenses. However, there are certain limitations that come with these insurance policies.
It's also possible to file a car accident claim in the form of a workers' comp claim if the accident and injuries were work-related. If an individual is injured on the job, the employee may be able to seek compensation from a third party while filing a workers' comp claim. For example, an employee may get involved in a car accident while making a delivery, resulting in injuries and other damages that a workers' compensation insurance policy would help cover.
If an individual is hurt on the job, workers' comp insurance will be the primary payor, covering most medical bills before other types of insurance. To benefit from workers' comp, it's important to report the accident to the insurer as soon as possible, after which the injured employee will receive a claim number to which all bills are sent.
If none of these options are available, it's also possible to have an attorney send a Letter of Protection to medical providers or have other programs provide compensation. Ultimately, there are plenty of payment options available to victims following a crash.