Ellen Phillips is a retired English teacher who has written two consumer-oriented books. Her Consumer Watch column appears on Saturdays in the Business section of the paper. An expanded version is at www.timesfreepress.com under Local Business.
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My son has just set up housekeeping and needs to learn a quick lesson in how to check for billing errors. In the past, he's overpaid some bills so I think this lesson is important. — Donald Dad
Today's column is the third installment of the yearly storage ideas, courtesy of ShopSmart, arm of Consumer Reports.
My husband and I are in the market for a new mattress but are overwhelmed by all the different types, brands, and promises. Any suggestions? — Sally Shopper
The past two columns have informed and emphasized a few of the major problems with some aspects of the health care system, thanks to Steven Brill in Time magazine.
Insurers with the most customers have the greatest leverage when it comes to negotiating charges; normally, they'll try to obtain prices 30 percent to 50 percent above the Medicare rates rather than discounts off the chargemaster rates. All too often, tho
Mark Kennedy's April 14 column that featured hospitals' vast overcharging of their patients via the "chargemaster" had me haul out my own notes for writing about what seems to be almost a conspiracy to defraud too many of America's sick citizens.
I've just heard a horror story from a colleague about his deceased brother's identity being stolen.
Even though our spring has been erratic, it's still time to think about seasonal storage and, as promised, it's also time to continue hints as to the best and less expensive ways to store different winter items.
As readers know, one of my favorite resources is ShopSmart, the brainchild of Consumer Reports. Its advice has saved money and time, and this week's tips are no exception.