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View More Press Releases by Health Care Service Corporation

Press release:

New Transparency Tool Helps Retail Consumers Make Informed Health Care Decisions

Issued by: Health Care Service Corporation

Date: June 10, 2015

Provider Finder with Cost Estimator Helps Retail Members Access Provider Information and Compare and Estimate Health Care Costs

Chicago, IL, June 9, 2015 - Health Care Service Corporation (HCSC), the nation's larger non-investor-owned health insurer, announced that retail members will have access to a price transparency tool, the Provider Finder with Cost Estimator, to help them easily find appropriate providers in their network and compare and estimate treatment costs.

The Provider Finder tool offers members an easy to navigate website to help them select the best network provider for their needs, based on location, industry-respected third party quality indicators and costs. Consumers can access information on more than 400,000 health professionals and 21,000 medical facilities nationwide, as well as compare costs for more than 1,500 common medical procedures. This tool also provides members with valuable information such as average office wait times and HCSC patient-submitted reviews to help consumers find the best value and fit for their healthcare needs.

“HCSC has long been committed to helping our members have access to quality care at the right time, resulting in the best possible outcomes, and our Provider Finder can help drive higher quality experiences for our members,” said Tom Meier, vice president, product development, HCSC. “Many of our retail members are new to the health care system and this tool, coupled with our vast online educational resources, will help empower them to make more informed health care decisions for themselves and their families.”

Provider Finder is available for retail members in PPO plans across Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas. Available in both English and Spanish, the tool’s features include:

  • Cost calculator. Provider Finder’s proprietary database estimates member costs for more than 1,500 treatment categories. Provider Finder cost estimates include surgeon/physician fees, laboratory tests and facility fees, providing members a full-view of their procedure costs and options.
  • Unparalleled network provider demographic data. Members can search by doctor, specialty, ZIP code, language and gender. Demographic and cost information spans 92 percent of physicians, 96 percent of hospitals, 97 percent of zip codes, and more than 1.5 billion covered procedures. /1/
  • Patient reviews and quality scores.Members can browse and submit patient reviews, search by physician and provider facilities, and explore information about physician certifications, awards and specialties. Members can also view quality data from Blue Cross Blue Shield plans, as well as independent third parties and locate Blue Distinction Centers® which are recognized nationally for the medical expertise of their teams, number of times performing a procedure, and their track record on procedure results.
According to a recent report by the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association (BCBSA), prices for identical procedures can quadruple in cost depending on which hospital or facility a patient chooses within a market. For example, the total cost for a knee replacement in the Dallas area could range from $18,801 to $47,324 depending on the facility. HCSC analyzed the outcomes of approximately 800,000 members in the employer market who used its Provider Finder and found that those who acted on a Provider Finder recommendation saved an average of $900 per procedure.

About Health Care Service Corporation
Health Care Service Corporation is the country's largest non-investor-owned health insurer and fourth largest health insurer overall, with more than 15 million members in its Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans in Illinois, Montana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas. A Mutual Legal Reserve Company, HCSC is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. For more information, please visit HCSC.com, visit our Facebook page or follow us at http://www.twitter.com/HCSC.

/1/ In-network providers

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View More Press Releases by Health Care Service Corporation


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