Highmark helps providers, patients know costs up front

Health plan Highmark is giving its providers a new way to reduce bad debt that can result when patients aren't prepared for the large costs they may incur under high-deductible plans. Under its new program, doctors and hospitals can get real-time quotes of how much a service will cost members, helping them to be sure that patients can afford costs, or even allowing them to collect an exact amount up front.

This allows both the provider and the patient to be on the same page, especially when the patient has a plan with a high deductible or co-insurance. Right now, the service is just being rolled out to 250 providers across Pennsylvania. In April 2009, all Highmark providers across the state will have access to the system.

To learn more about the system:
- read this Healthcare Finance News piece