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Wells Fargo Health Advantage

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2 User Reviews

Intro to Wells Fargo Health Advantage

Together with what used to be Springstone Financial, the Lending Club dedicates part of its mission to providing financial assistance for medical expenses through personal loans. Their partner banks, Comenity and NBT Bank, administer these loans. Wells Fargo has been recognized by Forbes as one of the world’s top 10 publicly traded businesses, as well as by Fortune magazine as one of the most admired companies. But this thriving bank does more than handle checking and savings accounts. Beginning in 1963 they got involved in consumer finance, and today they’re a competitive option for patients who need financial assistance with health care bills.  

 

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The Good

  • Time in business
  • Four medical industries covered
  • No application fee
  • Online patient portal

For patients looking for a medical credit card (or line of credit), Wells Fargo has a lot to offer. As a credit card issuer, they specialize in providing traditional financing, medical credit, and a great customer experience by personally working with customers and adjusting their policies to best fit the needs of the customer.

Time in business

Probably the most obvious advantage Wells Fargo boasts is its incredibly long company history. With over 150 years of experience as a bank, the company also has over 50 years of experience in consumer finance alone. That means their healthcare credit program isn't just a new experiment for them; it's literally an investment for them. For many customers, a familiar brand and many years in business are important in the financial partner they choose. In this regard, Wells Fargo stands out.

Four medical industries covered

This medical credit card can be used in four industries: dental procedures, veterinary treatments, Lasik, and audiology. These are four common and expensive areas, and in some ways, it makes the company stand out for specializing in certain areas rather than trying to cover too many at once. Whether you need financing for your pet's animal medical care, for your kids' teeth, or even for cosmetic dental work, Wells Fargo's Health Advantage providers have you covered.

No application fee

When you apply for this medical credit card, you won't be charged for a processing fee-at least not by Wells Fargo. You'll have to check with your health-care providers to see if they charge application fees, but as for Wells Fargo itself, there is no extra cost. This reduces your risk of being required to pay to see if you qualify for the card.

Online patient portal

Wells Fargo tries to make it very easy for patients to log in to an online account, monitor transactions, make payments, and more. The online portal here is convenient and easy to understand, which makes tracking your medical expenses easier and potentially less stressful. It is difficult to get an upfront estimate for the fees and policies that come with the Wells Fargo program.  That being said, it is good to know that the fees and policies are customized to the individual. Your fees and rates depend on your provider, your credit history, possibly your health, and other individual factors. This can mean that you'll be rewarded for your positive circumstances and not locked into a penalizing fixed rate or fee.

After establishing an interest rate on the account, monthly payments personalized to each customer will be set.  These credit card payments should be paid on time whenever possible.  Late payments will result in a lower credit score.  Individuals with bad credit are not automatically ineligible for these credit cards.  Those with bad credit that are accepted will pay a higher interest rate, but will be able to raise their credit score as they make monthly payments on time. 

All in all, the positive aspects of this bank come from its extensive history, specialization, customer service, and efforts to make patients feel secure and catered to individually.

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The Bad

  • No loans
  • Upfront quotes
  • Only four industries covered
  • Finding a provider in the system

No Loans

Plain and simple, Wells Fargo's is a credit-only program, which means they can't give you a loan for medical bills. For some, this is a con because it affects your credit score. A line of credit is unsuitable for large, one-time medical treatments that are very costly; rather, credit is optimal for treatments that are smaller and that come in numbers. If you're looking for a medical loan, you can't count on this credit card company.

Upfront quotes

As mentioned, it's difficult to get an estimate up front about the fees you'll have to pay, the interest rate you'll be charged, and other balance-affected factors. Even though your rates are individualized, this makes some patients feel like they are being discriminated against for their personal circumstance, not rewarded for it. Many may have the desire to take out a medical loan to help cover their medical expenses, but without sufficient information, they don't feel confident in a decision. Without providing personal information, account information, or your credit history, it will be difficult to find any answers.

Only four industries covered

It's great that this credit card covers dental, veterinary, audiology, and vision, but what if you visit a doctor in a different industry or struggle from a chronic disease? What about funeral costs, long-term care, diabetes, prenatal care, bariatric procedures, plastic surgery, emergency room visits, or fertility treatments? If your medical care treatments fall into a category that's not one of the fabulous four covered by Wells Fargo, then clearly the bank is closed for your situation. Specialization is nice for patients whose medical care expenses match up, but in this sense Wells Fargo has limited the number of patients who benefit from their program.

Finding a provider in the system

While looking for healthcare financing, you have to make sure your healthcare provider is enrolled in the program you want to use. For that reason, it's helpful if a financing company provides a search engine of some sort that lets you easily search for your provider to see if they qualify. Wells Fargo doesn't provide a tool like this, which means you just have to ask your provider yourself whether they are enrolled. If they're not, you have to change either your financial help or your provider. Many of the disadvantages of the Wells Fargo Health Advantage program are upfront concerns - not frustrations that you'd run into by surprise after committing to the program. For instance, you must know before committing to the program whether your provider is enrolled, whether your industry is covered, and whether you're seeking a medical credit card or a medical loan. For better or worse, Wells Fargo is transparent with these small details so that you do not become frustrated after applying for and signing for a medical credit card.

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The Bottom Line

They are indeed a recommended company for their well-known brand, their long and trusted company history, their online resources like a patient portal, and even for their specialty in the four industries they choose to cover. In these ways, the bank stands apart from competitors and gives patients added confidence, security, and expertise. Indeed, Wells Fargo is a trusted brand and has many decades of experience in this financing field. For many other customers, however, the provisions here just aren't enough. For any patient whose provider is not enrolled with Wells Fargo, who prefers a loan over a credit card, or who needs medical treatments outside of the Wells Fargo coverage realm, this company is clearly not recommended. This bank limits itself to just a few industries and to one type of healthcare financing. Though it may have many locations, the scope of health financing services is small. The good news is that you'll know up front whether this program meets your needs; you won't have many frustrations along the way if Wells Fargo does meet your financial needs. Lastly, if their program matches your personal circumstance, then you'll enjoy health services from a great brand and individualized policies and rates.

 

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Wes Strickland Pompano Beach, FL

This option was pushed by my wife's oral surgeon. They were bought in hook line and sinker. I am a 20 year banking customer with WF and my parents before that. BUT, this branch is a scandal. Higher than my standard cc interest rates. Health Advantage at 12.99%, my personal LOC is at 10% and my Signature CC is at 7.9%. Greed. Trying to take advantage of anyone needing surgical care (which is not covered by insurance) but if you need the surgery, you need it.... Not only did they rip me off for two years of interest, buy they were unwilling to work with me when I lost my job and $ was tight. I had 1 late payment by 10 days and they reported it as 30 days and will not budge. They have no interest in working with the customers. It really frosts my hide that I have stuck with them through all their BS when their managers were signing people up for fake accounts. I said no. they have done right by me. I was so ignorant, thinking I was getting great interest rates and wonderful customer treatment. Those little "thank you for being a long term valued customer Mr Strickland", sure fooled me. After digging a little deeper on all my accounts, Checkin, Savings, Personal Line of Credit, Business Line of Credit, Business Checking, Business Savings and Business VISA...... Super high annual fees, minimum balance fees, transfer fees, origination fees, filing fees, ........... Monday Fees, Tuesday Fees, Wednesday Fees.... you get the picture........... I was super gratified to transfer all of my accounts (2) checking, (2) savings, (3) LOC, (2) Visa Cards and a Mortgage.... What's in your Wallet?

1 year ago

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Jackie larson Jordan, MN

I got a Wells Fargo Health Advantage account to help pay for my husband's emergency dental work. We had very little options as this was the only form of payment allowed that didn't require full payment up front. I made a $650.00 payment last month to avoid paying deferred interest on my account and because the due date was on a Sunday the payment didn't post on time even though I allowed over a week for it in the mail. It was posted 2 days after the due date. When I called to inquire I was told that there is no grace period and nothing was done about the $38.00 late charge. Many companies will look at the situation and as a one time courtesy will waive the late fee but not this company. I am not at all satisfied with their tactics and terms.

2 years ago

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