Sunday, March 29, 2009

Hospitals help patients understand cost of care

Listing to the radio this morning, there was a local hospital that offered insight on how all hospitals can work with consumers to understand options when it comes to affording services. Oakwood Hospital in Dearborn, Michigan aired a segment on their weekly radio hour that presented a new program called OakAssist, informed consent for financial services. Not to be confused with the Informed Consent forms that the patient must sign prior to clinical services, this program contacts patient who are scheduled for services at the hospital and assists them prior to services about coverage, options, and discounts.

For the insured, they work with your insurance to get preauthorization so you know if a specific procedure will be covered and what is your responsibility with coinsurance and copays. For the uninsured/underinsured they will determine if you qualify for their charity care policy, discount for self-pay in the event you exceed the income qualifications for their charity care program, and offer direction for those that don't qualify for either. In essence, it is a predetermination of services for hospital care - a wonderful step in informing consumers prior to engagement, a win-win for both the consumer and the hospital. welcomes all hospitals to use our website to update their charity care information to inform all consumers of this financial polices. The more information we can put in the consumers hands the better decisions they can make about their health care choices. This will be helpful to not only those with scheduled events but also emergent or urgent needs.

For hospitals near you be sure to check out simple search feature, The Health Care Directory.

And be sure to contact us if you hear of any other money saving health care programs, we'd love to hear from you!

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