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May 2016
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Have Been Slammed by Unexpected Dental Bills?

Here at we spend most of our helping folks navigate their doctor and hospital bills. After all, at this point who hasn’t been slammed by a bill that at least ten times more than you thought it would be?

But we’re starting to hear more and more about dental bills that can be every bit as bad as any doctor’s bill could be. Want an example?

Lisa Ownby spent weeks trying to get her two young sons approved for complex oral surgery after dentists recommended it.

She also tried to get an estimate of her costs, asking the patient accounts employees at VCU Medical Center what she could expect to pay out of pocket.

“I was told I could not be given a dollar amount of what I’d owe,” Ownby said.

She was shocked, she said, when the bills and insurance company explanation-of-benefits started arriving in the mail a month or so after the procedures were performed a year ago with an amount that showed charges close to $40,000.

“If I had known it would cost $40,000, I would have said ‘No.’ They were baby teeth,” Ownby said about the hospital charges before the insurance discount.

“It’s not even like they were saving permanent teeth. I could have chosen to say, ‘I couldn’t afford this.’ I wasn’t given that option,” said Ownby, of Williamsburg.

High dental surgery bill prompts questions by parent

If you’ve been slammed by a dental bill, don’t forget to try negotiating the price down with your dentist/dental hospital. Remember, they’ll only get pennies onn the dollar if it goes to collections so they will usually try to work with you on what you owe. Don’t give up!

Have you ever been slammed by an unexpected dental bill? Tell us about it!

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