78% of patients who disputed medical bills had charges reduced or removed

Most consumers don't challenge or negotiate the medical bills they receive, but the majority of those who do are successful in getting the disputed charges reduced or removed, according to a March 21 survey from Akasa, a revenue cycle firm that uses artificial intelligence.

More than 2,000 Americans were asked if they ever had experience challenging a bill from their physician, hospital or insurance company. YouGov conducted the survey commissioned by Akasa from March 9-14, 2022. 

Five things to know:

1. Sixty-four percent of consumers surveyed said they have never challenged the validity or accuracy of a medical bill. 

2. Of those who did challenge the bill, 78 percent successfully had the disputed charges reduced or removed. 

3. Those with high-deductible health plans (45 percent) and Medicare Advantage (43 percent) were more likely to challenge medical bills than those with other types of health plans. 

4. Seventy-eight percent of uninsured patients surveyed said they never challenged a medical bill. 

5. Twenty-seven percent of those who challenged medical bills said it took between one to three months to resolve; 18 percent said it took between three to six months; and 16 percent said it took longer than six months. 

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