How God provided discounts on my hospital bills

Nia Klein  ·  Feb 01, 2017

After I got out of the hospital and was recovering from surgery, I was able to get some substantial discounts on my bills.

The first one was a big one, a $60,000 bill. But all it took for me to get $24,000 off the bill was to make sure I told the provider I was a cash-pay patient. Forty percent is the hospital’s standard discount. I just had to say I was cash-pay to get it. It was amazing.

With another bill, I experienced God working on our behalf. That bill was $15,000. The month that that need was being shared was a prorating month, so I was only getting about $12,000 in shares and still owed $3,000.

The morning I headed for the bank to deposit that $12,000 in checks, I had been talking with a representative from The Karis Group. Even though Karis normally can get providers to give a good discount, he told me this particular provider would not offer anything. I told him I wasn’t surprised, but not to worry about it.

I don’t know why I said, “Don’t worry about it.”

I had not planned on going to the hospital offices after the bank, but I believe the Holy Spirit told me, “Go talk to them again.”

I quickly sent up a “shotgun prayer”: “Lord, help me get the right representative.”

That’s exactly what happened.

I decided I would not start by asking for a discount, but just lay out how Samaritan Ministries works. I also reminded them that I had had a bill related to my cancer treatment 10 years earlier, and I had been able as a Samaritan member to completely pay that bill.

I sat down with a young woman in the office, explained my situation, and showed her the receipt for the $12,000 deposit from that morning.

The young woman just said, “Excuse me for a minute.” That’s all she said. She walked out of the office, then came back and told me she had called her supervisor, who was at home, and told her everything that I had just told her. She also said, “Which, by the way, blows my mind that this kind of thing (Samaritan) exists.”

I said, “Well, God takes care of His people.”

She then said she had asked her supervisor if they could just forgive the $3,000 difference and the supervisor agreed. I was like, “Wow,” and that was that.

I went and got a certified check for $12,000 and took it back to the office, and got a receipt documenting it. After that, I got into my car, and even now I remember, I got back on the phone with The Karis Group and was able to get in touch with the person I had been talking to earlier. I started crying. “You know how we just talked about an hour or so ago? Yeah, this is what happened …” I was crying with joy, and he was jubilant and praising God.

My suggestion for other members in the same situation is to pray before you talk to a hospital. Then, just go in and be relational. Listen to them and understand their concern. They’re a business and, for right or wrong, they have reasons for doing things the way they do. It helps not to be defensive, to just kind of take it slowly and listen to them.

Also, be sure to tell them you’re cash-pay.

If you have a history with the hospital of paying your bills, bring that up, too. But mostly, I think “gentle” is the way to do it.

James and Nia Klein are members of Samaritan from Urbana, Illinois.