Nerds Like Vegas Too!
Transparency Tools Save You Money
By now you probably know a Health Savings Account (HSA) is one of the top strategies among employers to control overall health care costs. These accounts are popular because they incent change amongst employee spending habits, which in turn reduces overall medical cost.
Smart choices + tax savings = lower medical spend for everyone. Voila, consumerism at its finest!
As someone who has an HSA and works hard to fund it, I want to use my money wisely. Just as I do when planning a Vegas getaway. But why is it that I can go to Expedia or Travelocity to compare airfare, hotels and rental cars, yet I have no idea how much my medical services are going to cost?
Have you tried to call a provider or pharmacist to ask the cost of a procedure or medication? Well, I have. After multiple hours on the phone, several transfers and dropped calls, my upfront costs were STILL not transparent, and I’m an insurance NERD! However, within five minutes time, I priced a flight to Vegas and it was $564 round trip with Delta, $612 with American Airlines and a cool $472 with Virgin Airlines. Why doesn’t that simplicity exist when it comes to my healthcare needs…or does it? Allow me to introduce you to the healthcare transparency tool.
Transparency tools give members access to cost and quality data before the medical treatment is attained. Just as I can rate my airline experience on Kayak, I can explore outcomes and reviews on facilities and physicians. Many tools include both an online experience as well as a live phone concierge who can perform searches and even schedule procedures. Some plan sponsors are giving incentives such as cash to employees for making smart consumer choices – I think I’ll use my incentive at the blackjack tables.
Unfortunately, cost isn’t always related to quality in the healthcare industry. There’s huge variances for the same procedure in the same region within the same medical network. Transparency tools provide access to this information so consumers can make informed decisions, getting the best care at the best value. That’s definitely an idea worth betting on!
- Human Resources E-Book
- Becoming a Better Healthcare Consumer
- How to Be a Loser for Life
- Assurance Calculator: Total Cost of Employee Benefits
- Employee Benefits, Easy as 1-2-3 Webinar Replay
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