40 percent of patients indicated that the state of the economy affects how often they seek medical care
Bad economic news drives more healthcare utilization, according to a study from TransUnion Healthcare, which surveyed more than 2,500 people who had either visited a hospital, clinic or doctor’s office in the last 12 months. The survey found that more than 40 percent of patients indicated that the state of the economy affects how often they seek medical care.But that’s not all that was revealed about patient behavior. Here are the key findings.
Patients try to use insurance coverage before it’s gone
One in four patients said news of a weakening economy prompts them to schedule a checkup or other medical treatment they may have been putting off because of feared job loss.
Younger patients do more research on costs
75 percent of patients use either healthcare provider or payer/insurance websites to research healthcare costs, with the youngest generations-Gen Z and Millennials-conducting the most research.
Out-of-pocket costs affects care decisions
62 percent of patients surveyed said knowing their out-of-pocket costs in advance of services impacts their likelihood of pursuing care.
Out-of-pocket costs affects physician choice
49 percent said having clear information on out-of-pocket costs before treatment impacts their decision to use a particular healthcare provider.
Patients shoulder more of their healthcare costs
59 percent of patients in 2018 had average out-of-pocket expenses between $501-$1,000 during a healthcare visit, up from 39 percent in 2017. The number of patients that had average out-of-pocket expenses of less than $500 decreased from 49 percent in 2017 to 36 percent in 2018.