NEW YORK, Aug. 8, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- An in-depth study, commissioned by patient payment and engagement platform
Patient billing is often driven by antiquated processes and impersonal experiences, which can lead to consumer confusion. As a result, regulatory pressure has mounted to improve price transparency.
The Cedar and Academy study, which included qualitative and quantitative analyses of 23 senior executives collectively managing more than $89 billion in operating revenue, found that more than half of executives identify consumer-centric financial experiences among their top priorities. In addition, 63% are aligning at least four of the eight points across the pre-, during- and post-care patient financial journey (e.g. scheduling, account creation, billing, final payment).
However, while the industry has made solid strides, some health systems still need to integrate more consumer-friendly methods of engagement like consolidated bills, more flexible payment plans and pre-care price transparency tools. Specifically, the study data indicated that health systems should continue:
"It's great to see that the top health systems are prioritizing the patient financial experience, but there is still much room for improvement. Approximately three in 10 Americans have experienced a healthcare bill go to collections, and if the top health systems are still facing challenges, then that indicates that the whole ecosystem has more work to do," said Florian Otto, co-founder and CEO of Cedar. "Overall, the U.S. healthcare system still doesn't offer the same seamless experience that consumers have come to expect in other industries such as retail or banking. This study demonstrates that the recognition is present, but many challenges remain."
The study also revealed that health system executives mainly think in terms of internal operational challenges, as opposed to external issues (policy, regulations or consumer expectations) as the biggest barriers to improving patient billing experiences.
"As consumers continue to demand more convenient and affordable healthcare, leading health systems are increasingly prioritizing optimization strategies underlying the patient financial experience," said Sanjula Jain, Ph.D., Executive Director of The Health Management Academy's Research & Advisory. "Given financial interactions are the first and last touch-points for patients, health systems will benefit from investing in mechanisms that integrate essential functionalities across pre-care, during-care and post-care interactions."
Cedar is a patient payment and engagement platform for hospitals, health systems and medical groups that elevate the total patient experience beyond clinical care. The platform leverages advanced data science and smart segmentation to deliver modern intelligence and simplify the healthcare experience for patients. To learn more, visit cedar.com.
About The Health Management Academy The Health Management Academy (The Academy) brings together top health system leaders and innovators to collectively address the industry's biggest challenges and opportunities. By assisting members in cultivating their peer networks, understanding key trends, developing next-generation leaders and partnering to self-disrupt, they are better positioned to transform healthcare. Visit academynet.com for more information.
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