Healthcare consumers conditioned not to shop for best prices, study says

Sixty-four percent of Americans have never sought out pricing for healthcare services, according to an Oct. 4 survey from Akasa revenue cycle firm that uses artificial intelligence.

The survey, commissioned by Akasa and conducted by YouGov, fielded responses from 2,026 Americans between March 9 and 14. 

Fifty-eight percent of respondents said they would research their options and shop for the best price if pricing information was disclosed before necessary healthcare procedures and services.

"There's clearly a gap between what many healthcare organizations — providers and insurance companies — think helps increase price transparency and the experience of patients in finding price information conveniently and in a manner that is easy to understand," Amy Raymond, Akasa's vice president of revenue cycle operations, said in an Oct. 4 news release. "This is a deterrent for patients in seeking out the best price like they would in any other industry, which can be incredibly frustrating." 

Adults ages 18 to 34 were more likely to research prices (45 percent) than adults 55 and older (27 percent), according to the survey. Patients with high-deductible health plans (41 percent) and individual plans (43 percent) were more motivated to research pricing information than other groups. 

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