Senior Citizens Track Medical Expenses on the Internet

Mar 13th, 2010 | By | Category: Lifestyle, Health & Fitness, Senior Finances

A number of insurance providers are offering a new tool for tracking health care expenses.  Some of us senior citizens still track expenses the ‘old’ way, that is we make a list—usually by month—of what we spent for doctors, medications, x-rays, lab tests, dentists, and other medical expenses.  Then we tally the expenses by month and have a hand-written report to give our tax consultant at the end of the year.

Or some of us seniors who are computer savvy may use a program such as Quicken or QuickBooks or Money that requires we enter our medical expenses in the software and the program keeps track for us.

Since you are most likely reading this article on the Internet, you now have another option available for tracking your medical expenses.  Quicken (an Intuit software) is now partnering with insurance companies to offer health expense tracking through your insurance company’s website.

Just how does this work?  First, check with your insurance company to determine what the program/software is for tracking expenses.  It may be Quicken, or it may be another piece of software. 

Second, follow the directions to sign up for the expense tracker program.  This usually requires your Group ID number and your individual ID number from your insurance card.   Once you are registered for medical expense tracking, you will be able to see each claim submitted by a medical office or prescription drug provider, usually going back as much as 18 months.

Then, in the future, you will be able to see when a new claim is processed, how the expense is broken down, what you end up owing out of pocket, and why.  The tool usually explains how the claim was calculated based on your medical plan.  You will see clearly what the plan pays, what was considered part of the deductible, and what you need to pay.

Most important to most of us is being able to see how the claim was calculated so we can easily determine if we think there is an error.  The software provides assistance in resolving claim issues that are common ones.  The more complicated problems still require getting in touch with a claims customer service representative however.

The great thing about this tool is your ability to have all your information in one place, and not have to store reams of paper claims.  You’ll know immediately when your deductible is met and how much you owe on any one claim.  If you are using a program such as Quicken or Money, you will also be able to pay your medical bills online.  Of course, online banking also offers this feature.

SCJ recommends you visit your online health insurance site to determine if this new tool is offered by your medical plan. 

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