Outstanding medical bills can be devastating to families who are unable to pay them. When the bills aren't paid in a reasonable amount of time, they can be taken to collection. This will have a negative impact on not only your credit score, but your ability to obtain new lines of credit in the future. Fortunately, there are grants available to qualified individuals to help offset these costs.
Contact your healthcare provider and explain your situation. Many hospitals and medical providers have grant programs for people experiencing financial hardship. Depending on your qualifications, your bill could be greatly reduced or completely eliminated. Eligibility criteria vary between providers, and most will require proof of income and financial hardship before altering your bill.
Apply for grants through charitable foundations. Foundations such as the Jill Fox Memorial Fund, Inc. and the Aubrey Rose Foundation both provide grants to cover outstanding medical bills for families in need. To apply for a grant from the Jill Fox Memorial Fund, a health-care professional must submit the application on your behalf. To apply for a grant from the Aubrey Rose Foundation, the application must be downloaded from their website, completed and mailed to them. Both foundations will require copies of your medical bills, income and proof of financial hardship.
Contact United Way. You can find the contact information for the office closest to you on their website. Click on your state and then your city. United Way partners with many businesses that provide grants to individuals that need help paying medical bills, and they will be able to direct you to the resources available in your area.
Contact local churches and inquire about medical grant programs. Many churches provide grants to individuals in need that are unable to pay their medical costs. Each church will have its own application process, but all will typically require some type of application, proof of financial need and proof of income.