More than 6 in 10 Americans have never researched pricing for care or services and 58% say they would if pricing data was provided.

Akasa, a developer of AI for healthcare operations, released findings from a new survey conducted on its behalf by YouGov, highlighting how patients fail to shop around for healthcare service pricing because they are unaware of publicly available pricing information or do not believe there is competition in healthcare because of limited transparency.

The survey of more than 2,000 Americans found that 64% have never sought out pricing for healthcare services.

When looking deeper into the data, younger adults (18-34) tend to be more likely to research prices (45%) for healthcare services compared to older adults 55+ (27%). Additionally, patients with high-deductible health plans (41%) and individual plans (43%) are more motivated to research healthcare pricing information than other groups.

The survey also found that 58% of Americans would be encouraged to shop around 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,” said Amy Raymond, vice president of revenue cycle operations at Akasa. “This is a deterrent for patients in seeking out the best price like they would in any other industry, which can be incredibly frustrating.”

The YouGov survey, commissioned by AKASA, fielded responses from 2,026 Americans between March 9–14, 2022.

The online survey was conducted at a confidence level of 95% and results for the total sample have a margin of error of +/- 2.18%, while results among those who have sought prices for healthcare services have a margin of error of +/-3.65%. The figures have been weighted and represent all US adults 18 and older.

“Patients want the same modern experiences they get from other industries but healthcare organizations aren’t always equipped for such transformation,” said Raymond. “A positive patient experience starts with the revenue cycle and a seamless front end. Investing in technologies like automation, patient payment portals and streamlined appointment scheduling can help providers engage patients and payers to improve on a number of fronts: enhancing the overall patient experience to be more consumer-friendly, ensuring appropriate reimbursement by managing prior authorizations more effectively, and calculating patient out-of-pocket costs more accurately.”

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