Tempe woman says hospital's mistake may cost her $1,600

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PHOENIX - Paula Miller lives an active life, but not long ago she started experiencing something unusual. 

For unexplained reasons, she started having seizures. "I'm completely unaware when they happen. It's just I'm unable to move so it's a little scary."

Paula went to the doctor, who told her she needed to have a battery of tests done at the Mayo Clinic. However, before she scheduled the appointment, Paula contacted her insurance company to get everything preapproved, and according to Paula, it was approved. 

She says, "I wouldn't have gone through with these if I had known that they were not going to be authorized and these tests are in the thousands of dollars."  

Unfortunately, Paula says the hospital made a coding and billing mistake and her insurance company kicked back the bill. Paula says the Mayo Clinic resubmitted the bill, but there was another problem and it was kicked back again.  

At this point, Paula was going to let Mayo Clinic fight it out with her insurance company, but instead the hospital sent Paula's bill to a collection agency which is now harassing Paula. 

She says, "I contacted 3 On Your Side because I felt like I had no other options at this point.  No one really wants to talk to me and resolve this."

3 On Your Side reached out to the Mayo Clinic and after looking into the matter, they wrote us an email saying they discovered a clerical error had been made on Paula's account.  

They told the collection agency to stop pursuing Paula and agreed to resolve the issue with Paula's insurance company.

Paula is relieved she won't be responsible for that $1,600 bill and credits Gary Harper for resolving the issue.

The Mayo Clinic says that after reviewing the mistake I brought to their attention, they have implemented a new billing procedure to ensure this same issue doesn't happen to more patients.