Charity Care Policy
KVC Hospitals, Inc., recognizing its obligation to contribute to a healthy community regardless of a patient’s ability to afford medical services, renders free or reduced-fee care to eligible patients of the KVC Hospitals, Inc. system. Eligibility for free/reduced care is based on the poverty guidelines issued annually by the United States Department of Health and Human Services. The need for charity care is addressed as soon as the individual indicates a financial hardship. Generally, this occurs at the time of service or upon initial billing.
Presumptive eligibility is based on the patient/guarantor’s current status with state agencies (e.g., Food Stamp Program; Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), etc.). If the patient/guarantor is already enrolled in one of these programs, he/she will automatically qualify for some level of charity care based on income level in relation to federal poverty guidelines (see the KVC Charity Care Discount Schedule below). Staff members are instructed to retain hard copy proof of a patient/guarantor’s presumptive eligibility in the patient file, and patient/guarantors are asked to complete the income statement on the KVC Request for Charity Care application form.
Patient/Guarantor’s Income Level
If presumptive eligibility is not applicable, patients/guarantors will be asked to submit copies of the following financial information to be retained in the patient file: their last two paycheck stubs; current year federal 1040 tax return; and unemployment benefits check stubs (if applicable). Staff will assist Patients/Guarantors as much as possible to compile this information. Staff will then determine eligibility for charity care based on the KVC Charity Care Discount Schedule. The KVC Hospitals, Inc. billing department will then review the application for completeness, and all awards must be approved or denied by the KVC Hospitals, Inc. billing department and/or the director of accounting. Applicants may include children (under the age of 19) and full-time students who are still being supported by a parent or guardian. Prior to being approved for charity care, an eligible patient/guarantor must have exhausted all other possibilities for third-party payer reimbursement, including applying for medical assistance. Requested documentation by the KVC Hospitals, Inc. billing department should be submitted to justify the determination of the state and deemed necessary as part of the charity care application. Staff will determine eligibility for charity care based on the KVC Charity Care discount schedule. An adjustment code will be assigned to each level of discount. The granting of the discount will be noted in the patient’s account; however, the patient’s account status will never be permanently designated as charity care. Staff will review the patient’s status on a regular schedule.