What do I do when I need to go to the hospital? CM wants to make sure you are well-informed, and you do not pay too much.
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At the hospital
Sometimes you need to be go to the hospital for treatment or tests. If this is the case, it is very important that you are aware of all the rules. So you do not end up with financial worries as a result of your hospitalisation. The Belgian health service is extremely well organised: it is a high-quality service and CM will largely refund any costs incurred.
However, in case of hospitalisation, you are expected to partially or fully pay for certain medical costs, such as patient contribution, medical materials, medication, doctors' expenses, and your room.
Can I decide in which hospital I receive my treatment?
You are free to choose the hospital, except in case of emergency when you are transported by 112 services. Also, if your doctor is affiliated with a hospital, your freedom of choice is limited.
Usually, your attending doctor or specialist will contact the hospital to arrange the date of your admission and to make the necessary medical arrangements.
What should I bring with me to the hospital?
Hospitals and certain care providers can consult your national health insurance details online, using your national insurance number. Because this number is on your electronic identity card (eID), you always need to present your eID.
If you do not meet the requirements for an eID, you will receive an ISI+-card with your national insurance number. The ISI+-card is issued to children under 12 and to persons who do not have an eID, but who are covered by national insurance in Belgium (for example cross-border workers and their families).
How much does it cost to be admitted to the hospital?
The cost of hospitalisation depends on many factors, but there are some guidelines. The total price is mainly determined by your choice of room. In some cases, your health insurance will refund a single or shared room, or your stay on a ward. The hospital may charge extra for a single room, and for the consultant, the so-called 'ereloonsupplementen’ (honorarium). In this case, you may be charged up to 100% of the usual rate or more. So, generally, you will pay a lot more for a single room.
After being admitted to hospital, you will be issued with a hospital admission form. You can use this form to select your choice of room and rate. It will also contain important information about the financial aspects of your admission.
Attention: what if you do not meet all the health insurance conditions? In that case, you are liable to pay a large part or even all the costs of your admission and stay in hospital yourself.
Tips for reducing costs
- Ensure your membership at CM is up-to-date or you may have to pay the entire bill yourself.
- Inform yourself about the costs for your room and your consultant beforehand (the so-called ‘ereloonsupplementen’). You can find the fees on the website of the hospital or on the declaration of admission. Ask the hospital explicitly for the cheapest option.
- Read the declaration of admission thoroughly. Be very careful before you sign it, as this is a legally binding document.
- Ask your doctor or hospital about the cost of the medical procedure and the materials used (for example implants, prostheses) and the services you are liable to pay for, either partially or in full. These costs can be very high. See www.cm.be/kostenraming for more information.
- If you like, you can request to have a state-regulated (conventionalized) doctor provide your care. State-regulated doctors are obliged to ask to the official tariff. The disadvantage is that you cannot choose your preferred doctor. This enforceable condition may be made only if you choose a jointly-shared room or a ward, and where there is an agreement between the consultants and the health care insurers.
- Always have your hospital bill checked for free by a CM staff member. Only pay the bill after it has been checked.
- What if you can't go back to work directly after your hospitalisation? Then, notify CM within 24 hours following your discharge from hospital. Use the form ‘Aangifte van arbeidsongeschiktheid’ (declaration of work incapacity), have it completed by your attending doctor and send it by post to CM. The postmark serves as proof of submission.
What about reimbursement of hospital bills?
- Hospital insurance covers part of the cost if you need to go to the hospital. Patient contributions and any additional fees for single rooms or consultants are not covered by the insurance.
- If you are not covered by your hospital insurance, CM will reimburse only a part of your medical expenses in case of hospitalisation. This will help to lower your bill. Of course, this contribution does not offer the same level of protection you get when subscribing to one of CM’s additional hospital insurance packages.
- You can avoid high hospitalisation bills by joining on of CM’s cost-effective hospital insurance packages:
A reliable, cost-effective, invoice-based insurance that provides an allowance for:
- cost of hospitalisation;
- cost of one month of medical precare and aftercare, for up to three months following hospitalisation;
- costs because of certain serious illnesses.
- CM-Hospital-Fix or CM-Hospital-Fix Extra
This flat-rate insurance automatically pays a fixed amount for each day of hospitalisation.
- CM-Hospitalfix: you are refunded 12,37 euros for each day of hospitalisation;
- CM-Hospitalfix Extra: you are refunded 25 euros for each day of hospitalisation, even for a one-day stay, and, in certain cases, a fixed sum.
- Optimum protection
By combining CM-Hospitalplan with CM-MediKo Plan your medical expenses are covered, both inside and outside the hospital, and all year round. This way, your - and your family’s - health is optimally protected.
Questions? You can find more information about CM hospitalisation insurances and what to do if you are admitted to hospital, by visiting www.cm.be/verzekeringen (in Dutch). Or contact your local CM office.