Light at the End of the Tunnel...
For most people, just the word healthcare causes a visceral reaction. So much comes to mind all at once when you or someone in your family is in need of a doctor, service, or procedure, not to mention if it’s an emergency situation.
Sadly because of the way heath care has been, most people avoid going to the doctor or emergency room altogether, even when it could be a life threatening situation. This is obviously not the best option, but for many it’s the only one.
Cost should never have to be the first thought before seeking medical attention.
There is so much involved in medical pricing that it has become the equivalent of learning a different language. Not being versed in this is why transparency is vital to ensure care for all who need it.
For example, If your doctor says you need an MRI, the first thing you do is inquire about the cost. They say it’s $1400, which you know there is no possible way to afford that, so you don’t have the test done. It’s a necessary procedure, but you opted out.You put your health at risk all because of cost, only to find out that your friend needed the same procedure for which she paid $400. When provider’s prices vary to such a degree, the public is almost blind to how much they are paying.
Most people are unaware that they can call different offices where the price may be much lower than the one originally given. Had you been offered that price, there may have been more of an opportunity to get the procedure done instead of risking your health by delaying a diagnosis.
"Why do doctors over bill for their services?
Doctors, along with all other heath care providers, virtually always bill insurance companies far more than what we would expect in payments. Why? The simple answer is that we usually don’t know what to expect.
Insurance companies will always pay what ever a medical provider bills up to the maximum amount they’re willing to pay for any service. So, if a doctor bills $100for an office visit, and the insurance company is willing to pay $75, the doctor will get $75. If the doctor bills only $60 for that office visit then $60 is all he’ll receive.
There is absolutely no penalty in health care for over billing, but any medical provider who under bills will short change themselves. This is why billing charges have exploded by so much in health care. This payment system is far too confusing for any health care provider to really understand, so the best strategy is to bill high for every service then take what they give us.”
Source: (Office Billing. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://truecostofhealthcare.org/outpatient_charges/)
Taking this to the next level...going from a single procedure to a chronic illness. This is a whole new ocean of debt potential for the patient or patient’s family.
This can cause the amount of medical debt alone per individual to be astronomical. If there was a price in the range of affordability, then there would be less debt, which would lead to less debt collection for unpaid balances. The most noted collections in terms of credit are medical bills.
“On average, 37% of a household’s total health spending goes toward out-of-pocket expenses.”
(California Health Care Foundation, 2019)
Here’s the thing. Most providers price by what they need to charge the insurance company in order to receive the amount of money they require. This, in terms of cash-pay customers, tends to transfer over. Instead of adjusting the price for the person without insurance, the patient is given the same price as the insurance company. So in the end, you’re paying more than the procedure actually costs, which brings us back to the debt accrued by medical bills.
● 21% of adults ages 18-64 have not undergone a medical test or treatment that was recommended by a doctor because of the cost. (Kaiser Family Foundation /New York Times, 2016)
● 32% of adults ages 18-64 have postponed getting medical care they need because of the cost. (Kaiser Family Foundation / New York Times, 2016)
● 40% of adults ages 18-64 have relied on home remedies or over-the-counter drugs instead of going to a doctor because of the cost. (Kaiser Family Foundation / New York Times, 2016)
● 34% of adults ages 18-64 say their doctor never explains the costs of procedures to them. (Kaiser Family Foundation / New York Times, 2016)
● Among adults who say they tried to shop around at different providers to find the best price for medical services, 69% called the experience somewhat difficult or very difficult. (Kaiser Family Foundation / New York Times, 2016)
● Among those with medical bill problems, 44% say those problems had a major impact on their family. (Kaiser Family Foundation / New York Times, 2016)
● Among those with medical bill problems, 29% say problems with medical debt started causing problems with paying other, non-medical bills. (Kaiser Family Foundation / New York Times, 2016)
It doesn’t have to be this way, nor should it. For each person that finds a lower price there is a much larger percentage that don’t. We no longer have to be among that percentage. We just have to change the way we go about determining medical costs.
This is why CarePayTM is necessary. To give everyone a chance to receive the care they need without making cost the first thought. To know that we can get help figuring out the price that should be paid by a patient, not by a company. This is the perfect tool to shine a light in the darkness for so many people and their families.
So many people feel like there is no hope and absolutely no help.
To have a place to go with people who want to help you with your medical costs is monumental. Instead of the providers or the insurance companies, CarePayTM is in your corner to negotiate on your behalf for the right price, for the best price possible without commission or kickbacks.
The first thing to think of when having a medical need now is you and your family, because CarePayTM is here to help.
California Health Care Almanac, California Health Care Foundation Kaiser Family Foundation/New York Times Medical Bills Survey, Kaiser Family Foundation