1 in 3 providers dissatisfied with healthcare costs: 4 things to know

Nearly one-third of healthcare providers are dissatisfied with the prices their patients pay for care while only 13 percent of patients were dissatisfied, revealing a gap in how patients and physicians view healthcare value, according to a recent University of Utah Health survey.

Here are four things to know about the survey and its findings.

1. Between late May and mid-July, the University of Utah Health partnered with Leavitt Partners to explore how patients, physicians and employers define what constitutes value in healthcare. The online poll gathered data from 5,031 patients, 687 primary care and specialty physicians and 584 employers.

2. Although all groups agreed the U.S. spends too much on healthcare, 67 percent of patients and 72 percent of employers said they were somewhat or extremely satisfied with the amount they had personally paid for healthcare in the past year, which included the costs of monthly premiums, deductibles, co-pays, co-insurance and prescription drugs. In contrast, only 37 percent of physicians were somewhat or extremely satisfied with the price their patients paid.

3. The survey found relatively few physicians identified controlling cost as a top indicator of high-value care. However, when asked what they consider most when making decisions about treatment, 24 percent of physicians said they did not consider cost at all. Fifty-nine percent of physicians said it is their responsibility to discuss costs with patients.

4. "The Value in Health Care Survey makes clear some of the specific ways we lack shared perspectives but also suggest points of convergence that can be used to map a path forward," said Bob Pendleton, MD, University of Utah Health's chief medical quality officer. "Both are vitally important in creating a collective vision of how to achieve a value-focused health care system."

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