What You Should Know:
– AKASA™, the leading developer of AI for healthcare operations, released findings from a survey conducted on its behalf by YouGov.
– The findings highlight how patients with high-deductible health plans (HDHPs) suffer the downstream effects of a complex medical billing process, including surprise medical bills, inaccuThe findings highlight how patients with high-deductible health plans (HDHPs) suffer the downstream effects of a complex medical billing process, including surprise medical bills, inaccurate estimates and financial hardship. rate estimates and financial hardship.
Many Patients Report Having a Negative Experience Regarding Billing Estimates and Medical Debt
More than 2,000 Americans were asked: A surprise medical bill is a term commonly used to describe charges arising when an insured individual inadvertently receives care from an out-of-network physician. Have you ever received a surprise medical bill?
– 50% of individuals with employer-sponsored HDHPs said they have received a surprise medical bill before.
Respondents were also asked: “Have you ever received a medical bill that did not match the upfront price estimate for care or services needed?”
– 53% of individuals with HDHPs said they received medical bills that didn’t match up with price estimates provided.
In terms of medical debt, respondents were asked: “Have you ever been harassed by a debt collection agency on a medical bill?”
– 34% of individuals with HDHPs said they have been harassed by a medical debt collector before.
The survey also asked: “Have medical bills caused you financial hardship?”
– 44% of individuals with HDHPs said they experienced financial hardship from medical bills.
“As hospital bad debt is an increasing detractor for revenue cycle departments everywhere, a streamlined financial clearance process with automation can combat this,” added Raymond. “Through automation technology, the upfront financial clearance work can be done instantly and accurately every time, facilitating a proactive and patient-friendly conversation to set expectations upfront. Organizations can calculate an estimate of the costs to understand better what a patient’s balance will be — and increase the likelihood that they will pay or get access to financial counseling if necessary.”
The YouGov survey, commissioned by AKASA, fielded responses from 2,026 Americans between March 9–14, 2022. The online survey was conducted at a confidence level of 95% and results for the total sample have a margin of error of +/- 2.18%, while results among those who have sought prices for healthcare services have a margin of error of +/-3.65%. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all US adults 18 and older.