Through the MDsave program offered by St. Joseph Medical Center, Kansas City patients have access to shoppable, transparent prices. As the industry grapples with transparency requirements set out in the June 24th executive order, St. Joseph Medical Center is a model of how successful consumer-friendly healthcare works.
Kansas City, MO — On June 24, President Trump signed the “Executive Order on Improving Price and Quality Transparency in American Healthcare to Put Patients First,” requiring new federal guidance to ensure patients have access to meaningful price information, protection from surprise bills, and greater control over their healthcare resources. Federal agencies have 60 days from the signing to establish this guidance, but St. Joseph Medical Center and others are already leading transparency efforts in the field and proving that transparency is possible and benefits patients and hospitals alike.
According to a 2018 report from the National Center for Health Statistics, 28.5 million Americans had no insurance coverage at all in 2017, according to a population report from the U.S. Census Bureau. Heath care expenses often prevent many individuals and families from getting medical care they need, especially preventive procedures that could help stave off future health issues. MDsave and St. Joseph Medical Center are working to create better options for these patients.
The secret is consumer-friendly transparency, which means making it easy for patients to understand their full financial responsibility before making their purchase. St. Joseph Medical Center offers consumer-friendly transparency through the MDsave program, which gives patients one easy-to-understand upfront price that already includes related fees, protecting patients from receiving balance bills.
“This is the same quality care that patients have come to expect from St. Joseph Medical Center said Jodi Fincher, CEO. “We are now able to offer our patients predictable, affordable prices through MDsave to ultimately help, uninsured or underinsured patients with access to the same quality health care they have come to expect at our hospital, at lower cost.”
“By working with St. Joseph Medical Center, we are taking an important step toward making healthcare more accessible and affordable,” said MDsave CEO Paul Ketchel. “We know that the cost of preventive treatments is often a factor in consumers neglecting to receive them. We hope that our strategic alliance will increase access to quality medical care and, as a result, help save lives.”
St. Joseph Medical Center is rolling out their program in two phases. Phase 1 went live on July 16, 2019 and includes radiology, speech therapy, physical therapy, and occupational therapy outpatient services. In phase 2, which will be operational by October 1, 2019, they will have bariatrics, cardiac imagining, pulmonary services, primary care, gastrointestinal, gynecology, orthopedics, cardiology, sleep medicine, and neurology services. They have made their current MDsave procedure prices available online 24/7 at https://www.mdsave.com/SJMC.
The price patients see is the price they get: the procedure prices listed on MDsave.com are pre-negotiated and already include related costs, like facility, anesthesia, or lab fees. The marketplace format works just like shopping online allowing patients to compare prices, add the procedure from the provider of their choice to their shopping cart, and pay for the service all in one place.
Patients print a voucher to take to their appointment as proof of payment, and don’t receive surprise bills after service is rendered.
Because patients prepay for their service there is no risk of patients defaulting on payment and St. Joseph Medical Center does not have to spend resources on billing and collections for these patients.
About St. Joseph Medical Center
Founded in 1874, St. Joseph Medical Center is a faith-based, 310-bed acute-care hospital serving Kansas City area communities. St. Joseph has grown to meet the community’s needs, becoming the first hospital in Kansas City to launch comprehensive senior care services and it is among an elite group of providers having earned the Gold-Plus Quality Achievement Award from the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association for the treatment of stroke patients. Services offered include emergency care, cardiology, wound care, and orthopedics. St. Joseph Medical Center is a member of Prime Healthcare. For more information, visit stjosephkc.com.
Co-located in Brentwood, Tenn. and San Francisco, Calif., MDsave is the world’s first online healthcare marketplace, bringing together patients seeking affordable, reliable care with providers offering high-quality services at fair prices. Using cutting-edge technology, MDsave simplifies the healthcare billing process for patients and providers alike through negotiated rates, bundled pricing, and upfront payment. The MDsave marketplace also helps employers and payers offer more value to employees and policyholders with out-of-pocket deductible costs. Launched in June 2012, the company offers a wealth of information on its website about common procedures. For more information, visit http://www.mdsave.com.