Consumerism in healthcare increasing, study

Making cost and quality data of shoppable services available to consumers in a format that is timely, actionable and easy to interpret will be critically important.


According to a new study by Rice University, increasing expenses and changing states of mind about accommodation and the capacity to customize life decisions are driving a pattern toward more prominent shopper acquiring force and individual obligation in medicinal services administrations.

The study explores and identifies the impetus for rising consumerism in health care, available levers to increase consumerism, changes underway to healthcare data management as well as points of concern with consumerism.

Scientists noted, “We live in a world where an individual’s discretionary choices (food, clothing, and travel) are increasingly driven by convenience and amenability to control — for example, online shopping — and the prevalence of mobile apps. These attitudes will only heighten with future generations, and it should come as no surprise that they greatly influence how people interact with the healthcare sector.”

“The increasing prevalence of walk-in clinics, patient experience/satisfaction surveys, online physician reviews, telemedicine, and concierge medicine speak to this. More importantly, they add an air of permanence to the present consumerism movement.”

The possibility that patients ought to have all the more obtaining power and, therefore, singular duty over their human services administrations has converted into an update of medical coverage benefits. Buyers now bear more out-of-take costs (through high deductibles) previous cost-offering to the safety net provider kicks in.

These high-deductible well-being designs can be combined with a well-being investment account or wellbeing retirement account — or purported customer-coordinated wellbeing designs — and have overwhelmingly shown in the business-supported market and protection trades, both open and private.

As indicated by a current examination, in excess of 30 percent of laborers are at present enlisted in a high-deductible well-being design, and across the nation, out-of-take medicinal services spending developed by 40 percent from 2010 to 2014.

Scientists cited several barriers to healthcare consumerism: Patients rarely have to pay the full “sticker price” for health care due to insurance coverage, thereby creating a “moral hazard” by consuming more care; it can be difficult to navigate the complex U.S. health care system; and there is a considerable knowledge gap between providers and patients with regard to treatment plans and medical diagnoses.

“By shifting the ‘first dollar risk’ through these structures to patients, the hope is that they will become more conscientious and engaged in decisions about which drugs (generic versus name-brand), treating clinician (specialist versus primary care), and treatment setting (inpatient versus outpatient) are the most appropriate to use,” the authors wrote. “In theory, this should help check health care costs by incentivizing the use of lower-priced options and reducing unnecessary variations in health care utilization.”

“Making cost and quality data of shoppable services available to consumers in a format that is timely, actionable and easy to interpret will be critically important.”


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