- Personal Finance
Cash In On The Cash Only Health Care Trend
Ouch! That looks expensive.
Health Insurance In America Is Overwhelmingly Too Expensive!
In today’s world of skyrocketing health insurance premiums and high deductibles, patients are finding it more important than ever to make informed decisions when it comes to their own healthcare.
Just as a person buying an expensive car or home extensively studies the market for the most economical option, research is required on the part of the patient for success in finding the lowest cost on medical services.
Patients are finding value in clinics who are transparent in their methods for pricing certain procedures and testing, and they are beginning to discover than it is sometimes less frustrating and less expensive to pay a flat fee for services rather than sorting through the maze of copays and insurance filing that has always been the norm.
Health Care Savings Ideas
In addition to knowing where to find medical facilities that are the most economical, saving money on health care involves talking to the doctor about what treatment if necessary and if there are less expensive tests that can be performed.
For the high deductible or self-pay patient, negotiation skills are a must when it comes to getting the best medical care for their dollar. Shopping around for services is extremely important, as well as not being afraid to ask for a lower cash rate.
There seems to be an absence of credible information available online on the subject of Self-Pay Healthcare. Insurance company websites in general are not transparent when it comes to listing prices, as they usually only focus on filing insurance claims which is of little use to the self-pay patient.
Many providers ask the patient to contact the clinic to discuss payment in person, which can be very time-consuming, and those who regularly accept insurance, especially hospitals, actually inflate their prices for people who must pay out of pocket.
Trending in the News!
Small Business Owners Make Cash & Consumers Save More
Fortunately, more clinics are recognizing the need for transparency and beginning to actually list prices on their websites for cash paying customers. These small to medium sized medical service companies are more often than not losing money from low insurance company payouts.
I found an example locally; a diagnostics clinic in Branson, Missouri. This company has recently launched a new program to combat the loss they had been taking form the insurance companies. "On average I would lose $50 per CT Scan or X-Ray" Kris Cutcher the owner and a Board-Certified Radiologist told me in a phone interview with me last week. Kris went on to explain that patients who utilize their Imaging services will pay one low fee in cash for their services and he no longer accepts insurance of any kind.
The concept locally seems to make sense since my out of pocket expenses for a CT Scan were over $1000. This concept saves $500 out of pocket expenses for me, then the small business owner gets paid the entire $500 and can make a profit. I seem to like that concept, rather than giving my hard earned money to the insurance provider I would rather not pay each month.
Could this mean the end for Obamacare and other types of Healthcare Reform? Is this the idea that will trump the power of insurance company lobbyists? I think if the trend catches on the answer is most certainly yes. Prices go down and profits rise as the healthcare industry provides better quality care with less out of pocket expenses. This will drive consumers to cash based health care which will continue to drive prices lower for health care services.
Cash Patient vs Insured Patient
Type of Patient
Healthcare Provider Income
Doctors Really Want Your Insurance Company To Go Away
Leverage The Market by Inviting Everybody You Know!
Owners of high deductible or catastrophic health insurance plans recognize the benefit of removing insurance filing from the billing equation. Simplifying the billing process by offering services for a low fee allows clinics to focus less on the financial aspects of health care and to focus more on quality treatment for patients, and Clinics are part of a growing trend in healthcare.
This market is new to most Americans and the concept is appealing. Another way to save a few dollars is to get some of your family and friends to visit the cash only clinics too. Ask ahead of time to get compensated with in-house credit for each referral. I bet they would give a $50 credit or more every time you save someone you know money.
Put your money where your mouth is...
Would you be pay cash for your healthcare?
The Insurance Providers Dark Secret
Middle Class Families Hate Insurance Comapnies
- Concierge Medical Care Comes To the Middle Class : Shots - Health News : NPR
Doctors are experimenting with direct primary care, a lower-cost version of cash-only concierge care. Patients pay a flat monthly fee for primary care, including email and phone contact.