Healthcare Cost Transparency
Last week I blogged about #EmergencyRoom overcrowding, staff shortages, and suggestions on when to go to the #ER vs. your #GP
and/or #UrgentCare. The attached article discusses the cost factor in going to the #ER before any #treatment begins and the need for #price transparency.
In the United States, an emergency room visit costs $2,200 on average, according to #UnitedHealthcare, the largest #insurance carrier in the U.S. Since the actual #price you pay out of pocket will depend on how severe your condition is as well as what #diagnostic tests and treatments you undergo, and your #deductible.
If people understood the potential #price of admission (walking through the door), they might make a better decision for everyone involved, from the staff to the #patient.
The recent viral story of Taylor Davis, an Atlanta-area woman whom Emory Decatur Hospital billed nearly $700 for #waiting in its emergency room and leaving without care, reinforces the pressing need for #healthcare reform. Though the nation's broken healthcare system rarely makes it to the top of the 24-hour news cycle, it's one of ordinary Americans' biggest concerns. They did not even take her vitals in seven hours. The system is very overwhelmed with a #covidhangover.
Systemwide healthcare price #transparency can protect patients by providing them with financial certainty before they walk through the #hospital doors. Armed with actual prices, consumers can shop for the best care at the best prices, avoiding price gouging hospitals in favor of better value alternatives. Binding prices can protect patients from widespread #overbilling by giving them immediate recourse if their final bill does not match the quoted price.
Approximately two-thirds of Americans #delay care each year for fear of financial ruin, and one-third carry medical #debt. Hundreds of thousands of patients have seen their wages garnished, assets seized, or liens placed on their homes in recent years due to hospital lawsuits over unpaid #medicalbills whose inflated charges weren't known beforehand.