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Charity Care and Financial Assistance

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PinnacleHealth hospitals provide charity care (free care) and financial help for people who can’t pay for health care services they need. PinnacleHealth treats people who can’t pay their bills with the same respect and dignity that it shows to all of its patients.

 

Definitions:

Charity Care means free care. People can receive charity care if they are uninsured for the services they need; can’t receive governmental or other insurance coverage; and have family income below 250% of the Federal Poverty Level. Patients who are insured and have family income below 150% of the Federal Poverty Level may also receive charity care in some cases. 
 
Financial Assistance means care at a lower (discounted) rate. People can receive financial help if they are uninsured for the services they need; can’t receive governmental or other insurance coverage; and have family income above 250% (but not over 400%) of the Federal Poverty Level.
 
Uninsured means a person who does not have health insurance through an insurance company, an ERISA plan, federal health care program (Medicare, Medicaid, SCHIP and TRICARE), workers’ compensation, medical savings accounts or other coverage. Patients who have run out of insurance benefits are considered uninsured. 
 
Charity care and discount rates are provided below:
 
% of Federal Poverty Levels Discount Category Discount %
0% – 250% Charity Care 100%
251% - 300% Financial Assistance 80%
301% - 400% Financial Assistance 60%

 
 
 
 

In addition to comparing the income amounts to the Federal Poverty Levels, total resources available will be reviewed.  Charity Care or Financials Assistance may not be offered to those patients that have sufficient cash to pay and the use of those resources would not cause undue hardship.

Patients who want to apply for charity care or financial help should complete the Financial Aid Application. Patients will be asked to provide some or all of the documents below:
  • Pay stubs for past 2 months
  • Bank statements (checking & savings) for past 2 months
  • Copy of last filed Federal tax return including all schedules
  • Copy of notice received from Social Security Administration indicating monthly benefit
  • Copy of notice received from Bureau of Unemployment for weekly benefit
  • Copy of any pension payments that are received monthly
  • Notice of current Medical Assistance denial or approval (if applicable)
Completed Financial Aid Applications can be mailed to the Financial Counselors, PinnacleHealth Hospitals, P.O. Box 2353, Harrisburg, PA 17105-2353. Each application is reviewed by our staff members. They will make sure it is complete and decide if the patient qualifies for charity care or financial help.

All applicants will be notified by phone or by letter about whether they are eligible for free or discounted care.

Except in the case of those individuals within 150% of the Federal Poverty Levels, this policy does not apply to patients who are insured. It is not the intent of this policy to provide free or discounted care to patients who have health insurance with deductibles or coinsurance.

With the individual insurance mandates that have taken effect as part of the Affordable Care Act and the creation of Healthy PA, refusal or unwillingness on the patient’s part to enroll in a subsidized insurance plan could impact the level of financial assistance provided through this policy.

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