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Know Your Costs Before You Visit Your Doctor

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Know Your Costs Before You Visit Your Doctor

Colleen McGuire

Updated: March 14, 2019    Published: October 6, 2014

When you decide you need to purchase an expensive item, you typically shop around and compare prices. You do this to get an unbiased perspective of the best value and vendor. Shouldn’t the same be the case for medical care? HealthCare Bluebook says yes.

Costs of medical care are continuously increasing and vary greatly from region to region, as well as from one service provider to the next. From rising costs in hospitals, to increasing chronic disease states, advancing technology and the prominence of poor lifestyle habits, health care prices are rising. The costs incurred are also largely dependent upon insurance coverage and a PPO versus a high deductible health plan.

Due to these facts, it is very important to determine medical care costs prior to making an appointment for a procedure. In doing so, you can make an informed decision and prepare yourself financially. Not only is cost information important for deciding if you can go ahead with a procedure, but also for deciding which service provider to go with. This can be an extremely frustrating process without the proper resources, however, there has been some head way made to alleviate at least part of the frustration.

Healthcare Blue Book

Healthcare Bluebook is a helpful solution for shopping around for medical care. It is important for health clients to understand that their plan contracts cannot always be depended on to deliver the lowest price available. This is because the amount the insurance provider pays usually varies widely with different health service providers. Charges for the exact same procedure can vary from as little as $400, to as much as $4,500. The Healthcare Blue Book was created to help individuals find the most affordable healthcare rates, free of charge.

Healthcare consumers may access the Healthcare Blue Book website, which provides a pricing tool that allows individuals to search for the fair cash price of thousands of health services. Some of these include outpatient and inpatient surgery; doctors visits; laboratory and diagnostics testing; dental and cosmetic surgery; and prescription medications. There is also a tool to help consumers document and negotiate service provider fees, as well as a guide for practical healthcare consumerism.

It’s important for consumers to take control of their health costs, mostly because they are paying greater portions out-of-pocket for services every year. One of the largest obstacles preventing clients from true consumerism is access to free, simple and accurate provider pricing information. This information is not only extremely difficult to acquire, but often it is inaccurate and meaningless when it is obtained. Many times it is fruitless to consult the physician or the hospital about this information, because they often do not know what the rates are until after the services have actually been completed.

It is extremely important for individuals to be empowered when making their healthcare decisions. Healthcare Blue Book can help.


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