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Hospital bill sent to collections, resolved following call to 2 On Your Side

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BATON ROUGE - Two years ago, Anne Hibbard's son was bit by a black widow spider, and it set off a storm of events that finally came to a head last week.

"It's a two-year nightmare," Hibbard said.

Hibbard adopted her now 20-year-old son when he was 2. He had been on Medicaid, but the benefits were due to end with him recently graduating from high school. Soon after, the spider bit him.

"The Medicaid had stopped at the time Brian graduated from high school," she said. "Apparently because of COVID, there was a loophole in there and Medicaid was extended."

According to Hibbard, that means her son was still covered at the time of the incident. But after visiting three hospitals for treatment, her son was still billed, and Hibbard's primary insurance picked up what wasn't covered.

Hibbard had been making payments on that bill for the last couple of years until recently.

"I went online the other night to make a payment and it said the account was paid in full, and I knew that wasn't right," she said.

Soon after, a piece of mail showed up addressed to her son. It said the bill was now more than 200 days past due and it was being turned over to a collections agency.

"How dare you turn this over to collections. There have been payments made," Hibbard said.

After spending time on the phone with collections and the hospital, she contacted 2 On Your Side. The next day, Hibbard says she got a phone call from the hospital and was finally able to touch base with the right person. That person told Hibbard what she had known all along.

"I said, 'ma'am, I don't owe this account. I've never owed this account.' She said, 'ma'am you are so right and we are now going to take your son's case and we're going to use it as a training case,'" Hibbard said.

Hibbard tells 2 On Your Side she learned from that call that the bill she had been making payments on for the last two years should have never existed. Now, she's getting refunded and expects a check in the next four to six weeks.


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