Monday, September 26, 2011

Keeping Papers - EOB's

If you don't have medical insurance, you may want to skip this post. If you do, I hope that unlike me (for years), you've figured out what to do with those notices you get from the insurance company, telling you what they paid, what they didn't pay, what you should owe your other words, your "Explanation of Benefits" or "EOB". You never know when you may need them to figure out (or occasionally to question) a bill from a doctor, dentist, or hospital.

I hadn't figured out quite what to do with my EOB's. Never do I throw them away, but I don't know how long it might take me to find the right one if I need it. I kept trying to figure out how to file them. File folders or notebooks? Medical specialty? Or...?

Finally it occurred to me! Why not take an idea away with me from the medical billing office where I used to work. There, they put them in notebooks by date. Of course, they have a whole lot more than I will ever have for a family. So I decided, instead of date, I will use month. Besides annual and occasional visits to other doctors and dentists, we usually have someone going to the chiropractor every month so, for us, doing it by the month does not make too many sections.

I put the most current month in the front, and prepared a few months ahead. So it goes: Dec. 2011, Nov. 2011, Oct. 2011, Sept. 2011, etc., going back for about two years (so far). Of course, I recycle old notebook dividers as much as I can. Do the dividers all match? No. Do I care? Not at all. As long as they do the job, I'm good with it.

If you were fuzzy about what to do with your EOB's, and think this might be an idea, you can, of course, have fun with it and adapt it to your own best filing methods. Notebook or file folders? Manila folders or hanging folders? Pretty notebooks? Colored folders? Monthly or quarterly? What works best for you in other areas of organization? Just do what's comfortable for you.

And if you have a backlog, don't let that discourage you. You can prepare the notebook and start with the next EOB you receive. And then go back through the older ones when you have a few minutes here and a few minutes there. That's my plan.

How do you do it? Do you have you EOB's organized? What method do you use?

No comments: