The Transparent Advantage of Price Transparency

Billing and pricing are important aspects of the patient experience, and making pricing transparent for patients is something healthcare providers are doing to create better experiences.

While wait times and quality of care often receive more focus for offering a better patient experience, the finances of care are equally important for patients.

Imagine you needed some work done on your car, and you didn’t know how much it was going to cost you until the work was finished. How would you feel? Would you feel anxious and worried?

Now, imagine you were quoted a price for the mechanic’s work before the job was started. That scenario gives you more comfort, because you know exactly what you’re getting yourself into.

Generally speaking, there aren’t any surprises in upfront pricing, which allows for peace of mind.

In the healthcare industry, the same practice of price transparency should become common practice, as doing so will enable healthcare providers to offer their patients information they need to make better informed decisions about their care, and it can help providers gain a competitive edge in the industry.

Healthcare marketers can help care providers create better patient experiences and gain an edge by implementing tools and strategies that focus on price transparency.

When it comes to highlighting the benefits of a particular care provider, healthcare marketers could do worse than encouraging care providers to implement price transparency strategies and tools.

Applying price transparency tools on a client’s website, creating pricing resources, and strategizing educational content about the price of care are all effective options that healthcare marketers can provide to help care providers and their patients reap the benefits of price transparency.

Price Transparency Advantages for Patients

The transparent advantage of price transparency is the advantage it gives patients. By knowing how much their care is going to cost, they receive a couple beneficial nuggets of information:

  • They become knowledgeable about the real costs of healthcare which might influence how they save money for healthcare
  • They receive necessary financial information that will help them in determining the best option for their care

Healthcare marketers such as PatientX who use inbound marketing strategies are perfect for helping care providers offer their patients helpful information on pricing.

Care providers should offer their patients resources such as downloadable pdfs on their websites, which they can create by enlisting the help of a healthcare marketing team.

While education resources on price transparency are simple tools, they are effective at informing patients and making more people aware of a care provider’s advantageous pricing.

Beyond those advantages, though, price transparency also creates more patient satisfaction, which is noted in an article on price transparency by Becker’s ASC Review. In the article, Ohio Surgery Center Administrator, Suzi Walton, discusses the advantages her team’s patients have received:

 

“It’s patient satisfaction. In the past, if patients wanted to know the cost of a procedure, they had to call the surgery center…and they were getting the actual bill charge instead of actionable data…and it was scaring people off because it’s overexaggerated.”[1]

 

Ms. Walton explains how using the price estimation software “BuildMyBod” allowed her healthcare team to quickly and accurately quote patients on the price of their care. She also describes how important that price transparency was for creating a better patient experience.

Instead of taking longer to come up with overexaggerated pricing, her team was able to offer a better patient experience through accuracy and promptness.

Healthcare marketers can help care providers in this regard as well by implementing helpful messaging and utilitarian design on a provider’s website that easily directs patients to a contact page.

That way if a patient still has questions about pricing, they can reach out to a care provider’s team for help.

Price transparency offers advantages to patients such as those listed above, and the positive impact on patient experience makes it alone worthwhile, but it also offers advantages for the continued growth and success of the ASC market.

Price Transparency Advantages for Providers

ASCs should embrace price transparency because of the advantages it offers them, in addition to those it provides their patients.

In the same article by Becker’s ASC Review, Ms. Walton also discusses the benefits ASCs receive from being transparent about the prices of their surgical procedures. In her words,

 

“Surgery centers always come out ahead when patients are able to shop around. The whole value equation [involves] cost and quality, and we come out on top in both areas every time.”[2]

 

Ms. Walton’s analysis of the benefits of price transparency are applicable to the entirety of the ASCs. The cost-effectiveness of ASCs is what sets them apart, and by being transparent about pricing ASCs can reap the benefits of what sets them apart.

By utilizing online tools such as “BuildMyBod” and other pricing applications, healthcare providers such as ASCs can take advantage of their competitive pricing by making it easy for patients to access pricing information.

Doing so will not only set ASCs and other care providers apart, it will make the patient experience better and more efficient.

As with any part of healthcare, patients appreciate and desire more efficiency and ways to save time and money.

Price transparency can be made easy by implementing readily-available online applications that let patients plug in their procedure, insurance, and then see an estimate of the price of their care.

While patients benefit from better customer service, knowledge of healthcare costs, and necessary financial information that informs their healthcare spending decisions, ASCs benefit from being transparent about the advantageous nature of their pricing.

As noted in the aforementioned analogy, by accurately and promptly quoting reasonable prices before any mechanical work is done, a repair shop is more likely to gain a customer. In the same way, ASCs can reap the transparent advantage of price transparency, because patients are more likely to choose cost-effective care when their money is on the line.

Why ASCs Should Utilize Price Transparency

  • ASCs offer cost-effective care.
  • Patients want to save money on healthcare and will choose a more cost-effective option when given a choice.
  • Therefore, ASCs should utilize price transparency to attract patients seeking a cost-effective option.

Price transparency is beneficial for patients and healthcare providers alike.

Access to the price of care helps patients become more knowledgeable and make informed decisions. Informed patients are better, happier patients, and by educating patients and readily offering them necessary information, healthcare providers can set themselves apart from the pack and create a better patient experience.

Care providers can effectively implement price transparency best practices by enlisting the expertise of a healthcare marketers. Healthcare marketers such as our team at PatientX are well-versed in the most optimal tools, applications, and strategies for effective price transparency.

By working with a healthcare marketing agency, care providers can set themselves apart from their competition and provide a better patient experience by actively promoting their pricing transparency.

SUMMARY

Billing and pricing are important aspects of the patient experience, and making pricing transparent for patients is something healthcare providers are doing to create better experiences.

While wait times and quality of care often receive more focus for offering a better patient experience, the finances of care are equally important for patients. By being transparent about pricing, healthcare providers can offer advantages for patients and create a better patient experience.

Healthcare providers can also reap the benefits of being transparent about the costs of care, because the cost-effective care of ASCs sets them apart, making it more likely patients will choose them when presented with pricing.

 

[1]Popa, Rachel. “How Embracing Price Transparency Helped Ohio Surgery Center Generate Leads: 3 Qs with Administrator Suzi Walton.” Becker’s ASC Review. March 8, 2019. https://www.beckersasc.com/asc-coding-billing-and-collections/how-embracing-price-transparency-helped-ohio-surgery-center-generate-leads-3-qs-with-administrator-suzi-walton.html.
[2]Popa, Rachel. “How Embracing Price Transparency Helped Ohio Surgery Center Generate Leads: 3 Qs with Administrator Suzi Walton.” Becker’s ASC Review. March 8, 2019. https://www.beckersasc.com/asc-coding-billing-and-collections/how-embracing-price-transparency-helped-ohio-surgery-center-generate-leads-3-qs-with-administrator-suzi-walton.html.

POSTED ON: June 14, 2019
By Noah Sundstrom | Healthcare, Healthcare Billing, Price Transparency
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About the Author:


As PatientX’s Content Writer and resident word-meister, Noah fits many of the writer stereotypes. He’s a crossword puzzle enthusiast and an Oxford comma evangelist, but he’s also an effective communicator who helps us find words that match our clients’ visions. Noah takes on all of the writing projects we throw at him, from blog posts to case studies. He enjoys the challenge of taking a client’s idea and turning it into a clever, catchy phrase, or crafting a strategically worded case study. His passion for words and sharing meaningful messages shows through his work and is inspired by his diverse experience. Noah graduated from Augustana University in 2018 with a degree in Philosophy, Religion, and History, which he describes as a degree in all of the books, all of the ideas. Reading broadly, he believes, helped him find the words to be a creative, effectual writer. Throughout his burgeoning career, Noah has found success by reflecting on everything he’s learned and using it to inform his writing, whether it’s a blog post for a client or his own works.