Outrageous Medical Bill On Oceania

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May 26, 2017
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#1
On November 13, 2016, I went to the medical facility on Oceania Cruise Lines ship Marina. I had a cough and stubbed toe. When I returned to my stateroom, I received a bill for $1,159. My insurance has covered only $255.92. I contacted Oceania and they have refused to rebate any portion of the charges. The care I received was as if I had a medical emergency. It was totally inappropriate. By this practice, they rip off their customers. I felt like I was mugged. I filed a complaint with elliott.org about a month ago but have heard nothing. Does anyone have any suggestions as to how I should proceed?
 

Neil Maley

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Dec 27, 2014
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#3
Did you have travel insurance or did you put it through your own health insurance?

Did you complain about the cost before you got off the ship? I wouldn't have left the ship without contesting it because that is an outrageous amount. You probably wouldn't have gone to the doctor at all if you knew it was going to cost that much.
 
May 26, 2017
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#4
Did you have travel insurance or did you put it through your own health insurance?

Did you complain about the cost before you got off the ship? I wouldn't have left the ship without contesting it because that is an outrageous amount. You probably wouldn't have gone to the doctor at all if you knew it was going to cost that much.
I had annual travel insurance with Medex (United Healthcare). They paid nothing. Every time I contacted them they had another excuse. My Medicare advantage plan, Humana, paid out the $255.92. When I was in the ship's clinic, everything happened so fast that I didn't have time to say no to anything.
 

Neil Maley

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Dec 27, 2014
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#5
Unfortunately thise annual policies don't often pick up everything.

Do you have a link to the annual policy that we can read the terms? Some of these only cover cancellation, not costs such as this that happen while traveling.

We'd be happy to look at the policy to see if you have grounds to appeal.

When you do go to the ships doctor they have to treat you as an emergency because that's what they are there for. They aren't there for routine medical care.
 
May 26, 2017
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#6
I can't find a link showing the coverage with UnitedHealthcare Global (previously Medex) for the annual multi-trip policy. Their latest communication stated that my primary insurance paid out $1,010 which is not true. Claims are handled by ACI. The claim number is xxxxxxxand their phone number is 610-293-9229. In looking at my Medex card, it looks like the main coverage is for medical evacuation and that they provide only medical referrals. I might have better luck appealing with my Humana advantage plan.


Note-edited by moderator to remove claim number.
 

Neil Maley

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Dec 27, 2014
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#7
If the information is incorrect you need to appeal the decision and state that your primary insurance hasn't paid anything and you are appealing the decision based on that.

This information you just gave us is important and makes this a totally different case. You rightly have a reason to appeal. Unless there is no coverage for medical expenses while you travel which you now indicate might be.

My wife uses an annual policy because she travels a lot for business and hers doesn't have medical while traveling, only cancellation. So it's important for us to actually read the link to your policy which you can ask the insurance company for.

Is there any other info we need to know about? Did you call the insurance company before or right after your visit to find out what to do and what paperwork you needed to file a claim? You should always call your travel insurance company when you are treated to find out what paperwork you need from the doctor to file a successful claim. You might have found out that it didn't cover medical so you could have avoided going to the Dr. for this non emergency.

We still need a link to the policy to see what is and isn't covered though. Ask them for a copy of the policy so we can read it and direct you better. Normally most health insurance does not cover you outside the US.

Here are our contacts for Oceania:

http://www.elliott.org/company-contacts/oceania-cruises/

If you have dealt with the customer service contacts we have, write to the first executive we show and tell him the bill is outrageous and your insurance only covered xxx andvyiubeouod like turn to waive the rest of the charges. Give him a week to reply. If no reply or you get a no, move to the next executive. Repeat weekly until you get to the top. If no one helps let us know.

You have 2 issues and perhaps getting the price dropped to a realistic figure will help an appeal.
 
Jun 27, 2017
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#8
My hubby stubbed his toe shortly before boarding a Princess cruise last year. it turned several shades of purple and a blood blister developed the day after we set sail. We went to med facility on board and the ship's doctor lanced and bandaged it. We returned the next day for a look-see (all was well) and a re-bandage. Total cost: $190. Our trip insurance (AIG Travel Guard) reimbursed us. Took about 5 weeks and a few calls/emails, but a check did arrive. I don't know what treatment Mr. Davis received for his stubbed toe and cough, but $1,159 seem way overpriced.
 
Feb 9, 2016
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#10
Did you obtain an itemized statement of charges? The procedures they did and the treatment they administered and what each cost? There is a chance that you received the wrong bill, a possibility that the bill was yours but some of the treatments they listed on the bill didn't happen. In either case you can appeal.

I've done this with a hospital when the itemized bill didnt match the services provided. I called and told them "I never received that line item" and it was removed. The explanation I was given was that there is 'standard procedure/care' that they assume patients in my situation (c-section) receive so they always charge for it. It's up to the patient to comb their bill and ask for items to be removed.

Did you receive the care/treatment for each line item that the itemized bill says you did?
 
Apr 10, 2017
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#11
Definitely get an itemized list of everything done. Did you have a chest film and multiple x-rays on your foot as well? They might have done those as a precaution and it could explain the high cost. You should also ask for proof from United that your primary insurance made the $1010 payment to Oceania. At the same time get statements from Oceania and the primary insurance company, Oceania stating that no payment was received and the insurance company stating that no payment was made.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
11,633
11,985
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#12
Definitely get an itemized list of everything done. Did you have a chest film and multiple x-rays on your foot as well? They might have done those as a precaution and it could explain the high cost. You should also ask for proof from United that your primary insurance made the $1010 payment to Oceania. At the same time get statements from Oceania and the primary insurance company, Oceania stating that no payment was received and the insurance company stating that no payment was made.
The insurance company would not pay Oceania. James had to pay the bill before he hit off the ship. Any payments need to
made to James.
 
Apr 10, 2017
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#13
The insurance company would not pay Oceania. James had to pay the bill before he hit off the ship. Any payments need to
made to James.
Then United needs to show proof that the primary insurance paid James. He said the payment was never made and the primary insurer can corroborate this.
 
Likes: Neil Maley

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
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#15
James, I'm curious about why you did not get this settled while you were on the ship. What kinds of treatments did you receive from the ship's medical staff? After your treatment(s), were you given itemized lists of the charges? What did they give you at the medical office? If they didn't furnish you with these details, this surely looks like an incorrect billing to me. It's important to know what documentation you received from the ship.
 
May 15, 2017
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#16
On November 13, 2016, I went to the medical facility on Oceania Cruise Lines ship Marina. I had a cough and stubbed toe. When I returned to my stateroom, I received a bill for $1,159. My insurance has covered only $255.92. I contacted Oceania and they have refused to rebate any portion of the charges. The care I received was as if I had a medical emergency. It was totally inappropriate. By this practice, they rip off their customers. I felt like I was mugged. I filed a complaint with elliott.org about a month ago but have heard nothing. Does anyone have any suggestions as to how I should proceed?
Using the medical facilities IS like visiting the emergency room - this is an additional service, and is priced accordingly - unfortunatley, without travel insurance, you incur the total charges for such treatment. The cruise line offers this service, but as the monies generally go to the medical company providing the services, it is not something the cruise line can "rebate" if you fell the cost is too high after the fact. You should have inquired as to cost up front if it was an issue
 
Feb 15, 2017
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#17
I understand James' frustration. As the previous poster mentioned, the ship's clinic is like an ER.

I have had several experiences with on board medical facility use over the past 5 years. The charges have run from $125 for basic visit (5 - 10 minutes) and some antibiotics to $350 for a more extensive exam with meds dispensed.

However, at least on Celebrity Cruises, I am provided an estimate prior to treatment.

I have submitted first to my travel insurance and any remainder to my regular insurance and received most if not all the amount in return.

I am not sure what the T&Cs were in James' plan. If they determined that this was an aggravation of a pre-existing condition, they will deny.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
11,633
11,985
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#18
It doesn't seem like he bought travel insurance, it sounds like he his own health insurance might offer some type of travel rider added on. These annual policies often have very little coverage.

I had annual travel insurance with Medex (United Healthcare). They paid nothing. Every time I contacted them they had another excuse. My Medicare advantage plan, Humana, paid out the $255.92. When I was in the ship's clinic, everything happened so fast that I didn't have time to say no to anything.
 
Likes: Kelly Davis