Patients have the right to inquire as to estimated charges for routine office visits, routine treatments and lab tests prior to receiving such treatment. O.C.G.A. § 43-34A-5 requires physicians or other authorized personnel to provide such information when asked.
At each doctor’s visit, patients should ask what charges the doctor anticipates the patient will incur for the visit and the services rendered, including tests and other medical procedures. While most physicians accept assignment from insurance companies, (payments made from the insurance company directly to the doctor on your behalf), physicians may charge whatever fee they deem appropriate for the service(s) provided. This is a business decision made by your doctor’s office and is a standard part of the physician’s practice.
Additionally, contact the physician’s office and request a detailed explanation of the charges, preferably in writing, so that you may review, verify or dispute the billing charges. Mistakes in billing can happen and there may be an error in your bill. You have the right to review your bill and dispute any charges. Most often, it simply takes one telephone call or a letter to clear up any disputed charges. The Georgia Medical Board’s only authority is to review quality of care issues or other professional conduct issues as they may relate to enforcement of the Medical Practice Act. We are prohibited from reviewing billing and/or insurance complaints.