I run into this all the time. We once had to take my (then) 9-year-old son to a medical facility after-hours because he had something stuck in his esophagus. He wasn't chocking, but he was in distress and we needed to get him somewhere quickly. As instructed on my insurance card, I called the after-hours number to find the closest facility. I got a recording that the office was closed and to call back the next business day (this was on a Friday afternoon a little after 5:00). In frustration, I hustled our son to the nearest insta-care facility a few miles from our home. The bill was a little over $200 for the visit and the claim was denied by our insurance company because the facility was "out of network." I appealed with the argument that I had followed the after-hours instructions to find an in-network facility and that it was the insurance company's fault that they did not provide the needed information. The claim was still denied. I decided right then that, the next time I had a similar issue, I would simply call 911 and the insurance company could foot the several thousand dollar bill for emergency transport and an emergency room visit. No wonder our premiums are so high.
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