Deciding on a healthcare plan or provider can seem like a daunting task. During the process, consumers may feel overwhelmed by their options which could result in choosing the wrong plan at a high cost. In fact, 10% of consumers do not know how to obtain provider pricing information and 15% believe prices would be the same regardless of which provider they went to according to the Pioneer Institute.
In a world where both flexibility and cost are important to consumers, it is imperative for anyone who sells health insurance to support their clients’ employees when it comes to finding the best plan for their needs. What does this mean for the future? The answer is simple: moving away from the traditional, confusing web of plan options and provider interactions and towards concierge services. These services offer a holistic resource for any and all questions around health and benefits and increase satisfaction among consumers of healthcare without putting added strain on the resources available to those selling health insurance.
"10% of consumers do not know how to obtain provider pricing information and 15% believe prices would be the same regardless of which provider they went to according to the Pioneer Institute."
For those who sell individual health insurance, group health insurance, or medicare supplement insurance, there are several reasons why a healthcare concierge offering is beneficial:
Billing errors result in overcharges of 26% on average and 80% of all consumer medical bills contain errors. Yes, you read those numbers correctly. One would think consumers would take a closer look at their bills to ensure they are accurate but clearly, this is not the case. In fact, 70% of U.S. patients are not motivated to get a second opinion on their bills, but only one-third of patients are confident that their medical bills are accurate. Concierge services take out the hassle of worrying and ultimately save money for both the consumer and the insurance provider by leveraging experts to review medical bills for accuracy and unnecessary charges.
According to the Health Care Cost Institute (HCCI), the difficulty in learning the full cost of services before receiving them makes it almost impossible to opt for lower-cost services or providers, even when you are scheduling a procedure well in advance. That’s where healthcare concierge services come in. These services do all the research and work for you. Say you are planning to have surgery, you’ll want to find the service that is at the lowest cost, highest quality, and of course most easily accessible. Concierge services look at what you need, where you live, and how much you are able to pay out of pocket to get the best fit for you. These services are able to compare procedure costs at facilities in real-time in order to make consumers confident when going in for a procedure that they have found the best option. When consumers choose providers blindly, they are unable to weigh the cost as a factor in their decision and so are likely to choose the most expensive provider without knowing it. With a healthcare concierge service, consumers are able to make an informed cost decision. And consumers aren’t the only ones to benefit from price shopping. The plan itself – whether the insurance company or an employer – realizes savings through price shopping as well.
Accessibility & Ease
For anyone offering health insurance, it’s time to take a hard look at how – and if – consumers use their benefits. Healthcare concierge services offer direct assistance to consumers trying to find a provider that is conveniently located and easily accessible to them. This essentially takes the heavy lifting out of finding that perfect match, which is so crucial during the current global health crisis. Even if needs change, concierge services will be there every step of the way to help both you and your clients find the best fit. By making healthcare more easily accessible for patients, concierge services make patients less likely to put off seeking medical treatment. The benefits of this are resounding – it’s best for the patient’s health, for their employer, and also for their insurance provider, as health issues that go untreated or undiagnosed almost always end up being more costly in terms of time, health, and money. Everyone wins when healthcare is more accessible.
A Healthier Understanding of Healthcare
America’s healthcare system is complex and confusion among consumers is inevitable. Making it easier for people to easily get the care they need is always the right answer, and concierge services have perfected giving the personalized help all of us could use when making decisions about healthcare. Concierge services make healthcare work for the consumer, giving them someone to call at any time for help in determining how to best use their benefits. At the end of the day, all parties involved benefit when consumers make informed decisions about their healthcare – so those who sell individual health insurance, group health insurance or medicare supplement insurance are wise to provide this benefit to their users.