Charity Care & Discount Policy


  1. Upon admission/registration all patients will be provided a written notice that contains information regarding the hospital’s charity care and discount policy, including information about eligibility, and contact information (name and telephone number) for a hospital employee or office to obtain additional information. Written notices will be provided in English and languages spoken by at least 5% of people served (currently Spanish and Korean). Translators will be provided to translate orally the notices for patients who speak other languages.
  2. Whenever possible GSH will provide financial screening to determine whether a Self Pay Patient might qualify for coverage from third party payor, including any private insurer or government-sponsored programs such as Medicare, Medi-Cal, The Healthy Families program, California Health Benefit Exchange, Los Angeles County Indigent Patient Program, California Children’s Services (CCS), California Health Insurance Program (CHIP), Victim of Crime (VOC), or any other third party, such as an employer through worker’s compensation or another person due to third party liability (TPL). When feasible, GSH will assist patients to identify possible sources of payment and to apply for the program. This financial screening will be performed as early as possible before services are rendered except when deferred for emergency screening and evaluation (as described below). The information provided to Self Pay patients will include a statement on how patients may obtain applications for Medi-Cal, Healthy Families, coverage through the California Health Benefit Exchange, the Los Angeles County Indigent program and any other state or country funded health coverage programs, and that the hospital will provide these forms. The notice must also include a referral to a local consumer assistance center housed at legal services offices. When no coverage is identified, the Self Pay patient will be provided with applications for Medi-Cal, Healthy Families and other state or county-funded health coverage programs and any charitable assistance programs that might offer financial assistance. This shall be provided prior to discharge if the patient has been admitted or to patients receiving emergency or outpatient care.
  3. For patients who have or may have emergent conditions, the financial screening will be deferred until after the patient has received a medical screening and any necessary treatment to stabilize the patient. Treatment shall not be delayed while a patient completes an admission/registration process. At all times, full consideration must be given for the patient’s medical condition and care should be taken not to let the financial review process create anxiety for the patient.
  4. If financial information cannot be collected at the time of admission/registration, reasonable attempts should be made to collect the information before the patient is discharged in order to fully facilitate proper billing and access to all financial assistance to which the patient may be entitled.
  5. Patients will be expected to respond when requested by providing complete and accurate information concerning their health insurance coverage and if they are applying for charity care or self pay status, their financial assets and income so that the Hospital may assess their eligibility for government sponsored programs or for assistance from charity care programs or the self pay discount program.
  6. In general, the Hospital’s experience has been that Self Pay Patients lack the resources to pay hospital bills, and it is not necessary to obtain financial information to confirm this. When there is a question about the patient’s insurance coverage or financial resources, the Hospital may ask a Self Pay Patient to complete a Financial Assistance Request (FAR) form. The FAR will be used to determine a patient’s ability to pay for necessary services and to determine a patient’s possible eligibility for public assistance, other programs, and self pay discounts from the Hospital. The information on the FAR may be accepted without obtaining additional supporting documentation, but the Hospital may also ask for supporting documentation such as recent tax returns or pay stubs, and verification from financial institutions that hold the patient’s assets. The FAR and supporting documentation may be requested on a sampling basis or when the available information suggests there is a question about whether the patient qualifies for charity care. The written FAR will be provided in English and languages spoken by at least 5% of people served (currently Spanish and Korean), and translated for those who speak another language.
  7. The Charity Care Discount financial screening and means testing will be performed by Financial Counselors in the Admissions Department and/or Collection Representatives in Patient Business Services.

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