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Financial FAQ

To assist in answering any questions you may have please review the following frequently asked questions.

How do I view my account information and manage my account online?

To view your account information, you must enroll in Centra Online Patient Account Manager by entering your account number and the patient's date of birth on the enrollment page. Creating a username and personal password for the account will ensure that only you can securely access your account information.

Can another family member access my online account?

A family member can access your account only if you provide that person with your username and password. If two family members are responsible for payment of an account, then each person will have to enroll separately.

Can I contact the hospital Patient Accounting office through e-mail?

Yes, you may e-mail the Patient Accounting office 24 hours a day, seven days a week with questions by clicking on Contact Us in the top right-hand corner of this page. A customer service representative will reply to your message during normal business office hours, 8:30am - 5 pm, Monday through Friday.

Do I need to enroll in order to use resources, such as the glossary, tips, etc.?

No, the above resources are available to you 24 hours a day, regardless of your enrollment. Enroll only if you would like to access account information or track insurance payments

Will I be able to view and pay my physician bills from the online account manager?

Yes, you can pay your Centra physician bill online.

What types of electronic payment methods can I use?

You can make your payment electronically via credit card, (Visa, Master Card, Discover or American Express) debit card or electronic check.

Can I print a payment stub and send it with my payment instead of paying electronically?

Yes, you have the option to print a payment stub and send it with your check or credit card information to Centra. Just click the 'Pay by mail' option on the 'Make Payment' page.

Do I have to stop at Registration every time I visit the hospital?

Yes, this way Centra is able to verify your personal and insurance information for each patient visit. An exception to this is for patients receiving certain ongoing services, including physical therapy, speech therapy, radiation therapy, etc.

Note: If your services are related to a work or accident injury, please notify us during registration.

Registration associates can provide you with directions to all of your scheduled appointments.

Who can I talk to with questions about my bill?

Customer Service Representatives are available to help you via email or over the telephone and will respond to your inquiry regarding your bill as soon as possible. For Centra's contact information, please select the 'Contact Us' option included on the website.

Will you bill my insurance plan for me?

Yes, Centra will bill your health plan. Please provide any information that your insurance company (accident information, claim forms, co-ordination of benefits information, pre-existing condition information or other health insurance information) has requested. Insurance claims are generally paid four to six weeks after the claim is filed.

Why did I receive more than one bill?

If you receive more than one bill, please review them carefully. You may have received a bill(s) from the physician(s) who saw you at the hospital or read your test results. Physicians send bills for their services separately from the hospital. If you have questions about a bill you have received, please call the telephone number on the bill.

It has been several weeks since my hospital visit. Why haven’t I received a bill?

Centra bills the health plan on file first. Once your insurance has paid their portion, any remaining amount will be billed to your second insurance or to you. Depending on how quickly your insurance carrier processes your claim, it may take several weeks for you to receive a bill.

How do I know that the amount you are billing me is the correct amount?

Once your health plan pays their portion of the bill, they will send you an explanation of benefits (EOB) to show how the claim was paid. You can compare the EOB to the statement sent by the hospital. How your insurance paid your claim is based on your benefits and their contract with Centra. If you feel your insurance should have paid a different amount, please contact them directly for resolution.

I gave my insurance information to my doctor, why don’t you have it?

Physicians maintain their own patient information. Also, your benefit coverage may be different for physician services than it is for hospital services. For these reasons, physicians and the hospitals retain separate insurance information.

How can I check with my insurance company to make sure they will cover the services I received?

A customer service telephone number is listed on most health plan ID cards. Before you call, have available your insurance card, dates of service, hospital name, the original billed amount, patient name and claim number, if applicable. Remember to write down the name of the person you speak to at the health plan. If your claim has not been paid, ask what is needed for the claim to be paid.

Other key questions you should ask the health plan’s customer service representative include:

  • Have you received the hospital’s claim for these services?
  • Am I covered for these services?
  • When will you pay the hospital for these services?

Note: If the bill is not paid in the stated timeframe, check with the health plan again and, if necessary, request to speak to a supervisor.

  • What portion of this claim will I be responsible for paying?
  • What is the status of the account?

Note: If paid, ask for the date it was paid, the check number, to whom it was paid and the mailing address of the check.

How do I know if my health plan will cover my hospital visit or certain services?

Check with your health plan or your employer regarding any pre-certification requirements prior to receiving health care services as coverage varies with each plan. The hospital staff will most likely not know whether your insurance company will cover a particular service.

How can I pay my portion of my bill?

We offer several payment options:

  • Make an online payment using your MasterCard, VISA, DiscoverWir, American Express or debit card by selecting the Pay My Bill link.
  • Pay by credit card using our automated phone system by calling the number on your statement.
  • Mail your check or money order payable to Centra and include your account number. Mail the payment to the address included on your statement.

If payment in full is not possible, payment arrangements may be made by contacting a customer service representative at 434.200.3777 or 877.908.8707.

What is a deductible or co-payment?

A deductible is the amount that you must pay before your health plan begins to pay for your bills. Typically, a deductible is a flat dollar amount ($250.00 or $500.00.) If you have a $250.00 deductible, your health plan should pay all of the covered charges EXCEPT the first $250.00, which is your responsibility to pay. A co-payment is a flat amount due for each visit to a provider. A co-insurance is generally a percentage of covered charges.

Should I pay my co-payment at the time of service?

Yes, you are expected to pay your co-payment when services are provided.

What will I owe after insurance has paid?

The amount you owe can be found in the Account Summary section on the left side of your statement. If your health plan has paid part of your claim, the statement will identify the amount paid and the amount you owe. Your health plan also indicates the amount you are responsible for on the Explanation of Benefits (EOB) form provided.

Why do I have to give you information about other insurance if I have Medicare coverage?

Medicare requires hospitals to bill any health plan that could have responsibility for your expenses before Medicare is billed. In fact, Medicare will not allow Advocate to file a claim for payment until the other insurer (or primary payer) has paid or denied the claim. For example, if you were injured in a car accident, at your worksite, or on someone else's property, it is the hospital's responsibility to make sure your claims are filed appropriately to the accident insurance plan, before it is submitted to Medicare. Consequently, Centra needs to have information about the insurance coverage you have.

How long will it take my account to be resolved?

Each insurance carrier is different, but we generally expect full payment from the carrier within 45 days of billing. If your insurance carrier has not paid the claim in this period of time, we may send you a notification of their non-payment and request you assist by calling them to prompt payment.

How can I receive a copy of my itemized bill?

Centra will gladly provide patients with an itemization of charges. Requests can be made by calling our automated telephone system at 434-200-3777 option 1 which is available 24-hours or by calling a customer service representative at 434-200-3777 or 877-908-8707.

If requesting by mail, please send to:

Centra Health
Attn: Customer Service
PO Box 2496
Lynchburg, VA 24505