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Financial Assistance Available for Eligible Patients

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Charity Services

As a charitable institution, KishHealth System recognizes the importance of providing charity services to the community and its obligation to provide medically necessary care to its patients within reasonable guidelines and in a fair and consistent manner.

For more information on our Financial Assistance program, including a list of providers eligible, please contact Financial Counseling at the information below.

Kishwaukee Hospital: 1 Kish Hospital Drive, DeKalb, IL 60115
800.397.1521 x153386

Valley West Hospital: 1302 N. Main Street, Sandwich, IL 60548
800.397.1521 x153386

What are Charity Services?

Charity services are medically necessary services essential to a patient's health that are provided to a patient meeting eligibility criteria for reduced or waived fees under the KishHealth System Financial Assistance Policy.

Who is Eligible for Charity Services?

  • Low-income
  • Uninsured and under insured
  • Patients with documented extenuating circumstances that make them unable to afford their medically necessary care (medical indigents).

Based on current Illinois and federal laws, KishHealth System has an obligation to provide:

  • Emergency and/or trauma services to the best of its ability before determining the source of payment for such services.
  • Medically necessary care to uninsured, low income and others who cannot afford their care due to documented extenuating circumstances.

What Services are not Eligible?

Services that are not medically necessary or elective, as determined by KishHealth System, are NOT covered by the Financial Assistance Policy.

How are Charity Services Communicated?

KishHealth System communicates the availability of charity services through:

  • This website
  • Health System Publications
  • Financial Assistance Brochure
  • Signage where patients register and pay their bills
  • Verbal interactions with patients and family members.

Starting the Process

KishHealth System’s financial counselors work with patients to start the financial assistance process.

  • Patients will be asked for general financial information upon admission or, in the case of emergency services, after medical screening or stabilizing treatment.
  • Appropriate patients will receive written and verbal information regarding the availability of financial assistance, or
  • Patients may request eligibility paperwork (the "Financial Disclosure Worksheet") and staff will help them complete the worksheet.
  • Other resources will be explored including Medicaid.

Patients Meeting the Following Criteria will be Eligible for Charity Services

  • Low Income Individuals: KishHealth System will bill third party payors (i.e. private insurance) for medically necessary services. For any amount not covered, a patient meeting a Federal Poverty Level income category may be eligible to receive a discount off KishHealth System standard charges
  • Uninsured or Medically Indigent Individuals: A patient failing to meet the criteria in the Financial Assistance Policy may be eligible for charity services based on the following criteria:
    • Family size and other related pertinent factors including financial obligations, family living expenses or the like.
    • Employment status, including but not limited to future earning capacity and allowing for the likelihood of a financial capacity sufficient to meet his or her financial obligations in an acceptable time period.
    • Future and current ability to pay.
    • Amount and frequency of medical bills in relation to the above factors.
    • Catastrophic medical costs that may make the patient medically indigent, even if the patient does not initially meet the criteria established under the policy
    • Other factors KishHealth System deems appropriate from time to time.
    • Special Consideration of Assets. In determining a patient's eligibility for charity services under the policy, KishHealth System will NOT consider the value of a patient's personal property or real estate.

Granting Charity Services

Determination of a patient's eligibility for charity services under this policy will be made within two weeks from the time of services, assuming that adequate eligibility information is readily available. Guidelines follow:

  • The determination of a patient's eligibility for charity services under the policy will be made in a non-discriminatory manner.
  • KishHealth System will ask patients who seek charity services to complete a Financial Disclosure Worksheet. The Financial Disclosure Worksheet will be used to assist KishHealth System in determining whether the patient qualifies for charity services.
  • KishHealth System will assist patients in completing the Financial Disclosure Worksheet.
  • KishHealth System's determinations will be made only after a complete and accurate Financial Disclosure Worksheet is obtained.
  • Patients applying and approved for charity services must update their Financial Disclosure Worksheet every six months.
  • Before an application for charity services is reviewed for eligibility, KishHealth System will assist the patient in determining whether other resources, including Medicaid. To assist in this process, KishHealth System will refer a patient to enrollment personnel.
  • Following exhaustion of available community resources, if a patient meets eligibility criteria and the services qualify as charity services, KishHealth System will grant charity Services.

Payment Policies Applicable to Charity Services

  • Before beginning collection proceedings relating to charity services, KishHealth System will attempt to assist a patient and exhaust all available community resources, including community aid, Medicaid and Medicare, welfare and other community resources.
  • Once KishHealth System has classified a patient's services as charity services that determination will be final unless KishHealth System finds the determination is based on erroneous information.
  • Payments made by self-pay patients prior to the determination of eligibility for charity services will not be refunded or considered against outstanding balances for purposes of applying for or determining eligibility for charity services.
  • KishHealth System may write off inactive outstanding bad debt balances for services provided before a patient was eligible for or failed to complete an application for Charity Services.
  • KishHealth System will not pursue or attach any patient's personal property or real estate during collection.
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