Massachusetts therapist hit with a $28,000 bill from insurance company over retroactive claim denial

Meg Arnould said she always took pride in her meticulous record keeping for her therapy sessions. Then the Easthampton therapist was hit with a letter from an insurance company demanding $28,000. The company, who had recently reviewed six years of Arnould’s patient records, was issuing a retroactive claim denial.

While health care providers have to meet billing deadlines, insurance companies don’t have any deadlines for auditing clinicians and demanding payment years later, said Sen. Cindy Friedman, an Arlington Democrat who introduced S.589. Some insurance companies have directed third-party companies to pursue the retroactive payments.

“This has a chilling effect on how healthcare providers practice, discouraging many from take insurance, ultimately impacting patients’ access to service,” she said.

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