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I was in the hopsital for 4 days this month in Arizona

Sorry for your illness.

got admitted without any insurance.

That's scary. When I look back at your old posts on this board, it looks like you've been going bare since at least early 2020 - during a pandemic. Which makes it even more scary.

I gave First Data my pension stub so I could apply for aCCESS in Arizona.

Medicaid expansion (which became law in AZ in 2013) allows coverage for up to 133% of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL). For a single person, the FPL is $12,880, which means that you should get coverage if your income is up to $17,130

Given that you said in an earlier thread that your pension income is $1xx/month, just your pension income would obviously qualify you for Medicaid. The problem for you may be that you have more than just pension income - you have talked about having income from your stock accounts. So what was your income last year and how much will it be this year? More or less than that $17,130 limit?

If ACCESS denies my claim, how do I go about trying to negotiate the bill or should I consult a lawyer.

Well, I would suggest a few things before you go to an attorney:
- Most hospitals have a patient advocate - meet with them
- Check your bill for accuracy, and be sure you understand and agree that everything you were charged for is legit
- Find out what insurance companies paid for each different code on your bill. The patient advocate may be able to help you with this, or there are a couple of different companies I've been told also do this: Health Care Blue Book https://www.healthcarebluebook.com/explore-home/ and Fair Health https://www.fairhealthconsumer.org/
- If you have the resources (i.e. assets in your stock accounts), you can see if they will accept less if you give them a lump sum payment
- If all of those get you nowhere, you might want to try hiring a medical billing advocate - who will likely be less expensive than an attorney

Keep in mind that any assets, like your stock accounts, can be seized if the hospital ends up suing you successfully.

I would strongly encourage you to look at getting ACA coverage if your income is too high for AZ Medicaid. It's too late to get coverage for 2021, but for 2022, there are additional subsidies because of the provisions of the American Rescue Plan, so it may not cost you very much at all, depending on your income level. And whatever it does cost you, it will probably still be a lot less than having a bunch of your assets seized to pay for an uninsured hospital stay.

AJ
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