A listener’s doctor wanted her credit card info up front , before her appointment. She wondered: Do I need to give it to them? We did too.

After all, who wants the risk of being overcharged , and then having to fight for money back?

Experts gave us their best advice, including a couple of tricks to try, and a legal protection you may be able to rely on. 

Meanwhile, Elisabeth Rosenthal, senior contributing editor at KFF Health News, filled us in on the rapid growth of medical debt as a financial product, including specialized credit cards and financing plans pushed by hospitals and other providers.

They can come with steep interest rates, and (surprise, surprise) the terms aren’t always spelled out clearly. 

The federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has been issuing reports, including a handy FAQ, but hasn’t taken enforcement action in a decade.

Here’s a transcript of this episode

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