Coronado Woman Faces Insurance Coverage Conundrum

Ambulance rides can be quick but for a Coronado woman, a bill for an ambulance ride followed her for three years after the city sent her to collections.

“I was at the Loews Coronado, doing a water aerobics class and suddenly it felt like I was getting stabbed in the back,” Dina Demeo said. 

This was in 2014 and at first, Dina said she thought she pulled a muscle. At the hospital, Dina was diagnosed with kidney stones. She said she thought the ambulance trip would be covered by not one, but two insurance policies in her name. 

“The bill was paid in full, overpaid actually,” Dina said. 

Little did Dina know, that overpayment would lead to a series of mistakes being made. 

She said she didn’t think much of it initially. 

“I kept getting calls from a collections agency [saying] you owe $87 and then suddenly, I got one saying it’s at $657.55,” Dina said. 

Dina said she was confused because she thought the bill, sent by the City of Coronado, had already been paid by her insurance carriers. 

“Once it goes to collections, the people with the City of Coronado couldn’t help me,” Dina said, “She said once it’s in collections, they can’t do anything about it.” 

Dina said city representatives told her the bill in their system was listed as unpaid but Dina said that didn’t make sense, since she had received statements from her insurance carriers, detailing the bill being paid. 

After hours on the phone, Dina said she gave up and called NBC 7 Responds for help. 

NBC 7 Responds reached out to the City of Coronado and spoke with an analyst for the City Manager’s office. The analyst sent NBC 7 Responds a chart which had the answers to Dina’s problem. 

When Dina’s primary insurance carrier overpaid the City of Coronado, the city offered the company a refund of that amount. Instead of just taking the overpaid amount, the insurance company mistakenly withdrew their entire payment from the City of Coronado, leaving a balance on Dina’s account. 

After NBC 7 Responds contacted the insurance companies, Dina received a letter in the mail saying the balance had been wiped away clean.

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