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Never Pay The First Bill: And Other Ways To Fight The Health Care System And Win

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Investigative health reporter Marshall Allen's new book, "Never Pay the First Bill: And Other Ways to Fight the Health Care System and Win," is available now.

On this edition of Your Call, award-winning health reporter Marshall Allen will discuss his new book, Never Pay the First Bill.

He says the health care industry wants you to think you're helpless in the face of its predatory billing, but you are not. He tells the stories of people who have successfully fought over-billing, price gouging, insurance denials, and more to get the care they deserve. He'll tell us how to analyze and contest medical bills so you don’t overpay. What will it take to build a health care system that does not force people to fight back?


Marshall Allen, author of Never Pay the First Bill: And Other Ways to Fight the Health Care System and Win, and investigative health reporter who most recently covered the health care industry at ProPublica. Marshall teaches investigative reporting at the Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY

Web Resources:

Kaiser Health News, Dan Weissmann: ‘An Arm and a Leg’: Tips for Fighting Medical Bills from ProPublica’s Marshall Allen

ProPublica, Marshall Allen: A Doctor Went to His Own Employer for a COVID-19 Antibody Test. It Cost $10,984.

The New York Times, Jeneen Interlandi: Health Insurance Shouldn't Be Tied to Employers

The New York Times, Reed Abelson: Major U.S. Health Insurers Report Big Profits, Benefiting From the Pandemic

NPR: Uninsured Or Unemployed? You Might Be Missing Out On Free Health Insurance

Find a patient advocate: Advo Connection

Lea is a producer for Your Call on KALW Local Public Radio. She graduated from the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY in 2018.
Rose Aguilar has been the host of Your Call since 2006. She became a regular media roundtable guest in 2001. In 2019, the San Francisco Press Club named Your Call the best public affairs program. In 2017, The Nation named it the most valuable local radio show.