One way to pay off your medical debt is to consolidate all of your unpaid medical bills into a single loan. You can do this with a personal loan, a credit card with balance transfer, a home equity loan, or a 401 (k) loan. There are several ways to consolidate medical bills. These can include a personal loan, a home equity loan, or a credit card balance transfer.
Some debt management programs also allow for consolidation. You can hire a medical bill advocate to negotiate on your behalf. Advocates are medical billing experts who know how to read healthcare bills and understand the common costs of procedures. They can detect possible errors or surcharges and help you reduce the amount you owe.
If you really can't afford your medical bills, don't assume that debt consolidation is your only option. The downside is that you use a secured asset (your home) to pay off an unsecured debt (your credit card or medical bills). Debt consolidation for medical bills involves obtaining a loan, paying off medical debt, and repaying the loan as soon as possible to avoid excessive interest charges. Most personal loans are unsecured, which means that you don't have to present a guarantee (such as your house or car) to be eligible for one.
A hospital or doctor's office may turn over your unpaid bills to a collection agency, but the debt will remain interest-free. Below you'll find more information on ways to avoid medical debt, relief options, and consolidation. One of the advantages of a personal loan is that you can use it for just about any purpose, including home renovations. But should you consolidate medical debt? Apply for a government aid program? Getting a loan for medical debts? Filing for bankruptcy? These credit protections may disappear if you decide to consolidate your medical debts into a single loan or credit card.
Deciding whether to consolidate your medical bills or not can be a difficult decision, but you don't have to do it alone. A personal loan will pay off the combined medical debts, but it will allow you to pay a monthly payment that includes interest, meaning that you will pay more for your medical debt than what was initially charged to you. You enroll in a debt management program offered by a non-profit credit counseling agency that works with your creditors to reduce interest payments on your bills. First, ask yourself if you can manage multiple payments to doctors, hospitals and testing centers without consolidating your debt into one payment.
In the case of medical bills in collections, know that debt collectors generally buy debts for cents on the dollar. Many struggle to pay off these debts: 34 percent of Americans increase their credit card debt to pay medical bills and 70 percent have to reduce the costs of food, clothing and household items.