Data from trusted sources, user-generated content, powerful algorithms lead to better informed cost decisions
SEATTLE, Oct. 27 /PRNewswire/ -- Mebik.org, a free online social service designed to give people transparent one-step access to local medical costs in order to help them make better-informed decisions, launched nationally today at www.Mebik.org. The site translates often-complex medical terms and codes into common language and gives people the opportunity to share information about special offers, provide tips on how to reduce medical bills, or give advice on how to reduce insurance copayments. Mebik, which stands for Medical Bills Knowledge, initially provides localized dental price information. Over the next few months the site will be updated to include vision, chiropractic treatment, family medicine, radiology, laboratory test and other costs.
Mebik.org was built using patent-pending technology that combines published information from certified sources, user-generated content, mathematical algorithms that factor different economic variables and audits using state-of-the-art on-demand workforce through cloud computing. People using Mebik.org have access to more than four million pages of useful hyper-local content that is presented in easy to understand terms.
Over $2.2 trillion are spent on healthcare in the United States every year, and over 20 percent of that is out-of-pocket costs for individuals. In some cases, like dental, which represents $95 billion spending per year, out-of-pocket expenses can be as high as 43 percent, as reported by the New York State Dental Journal.
"We can check many web sites for information about car prices. We can use the Internet to get deals on hotel rooms, car rentals or airline tickets. Yet despite many of us taking a more active role in managing our healthcare dollars, access to understandable information about medical costs is hard to find," said Enrique Godreau III, a Managing Director at Voyager Capital, a leading west coast venture capital firm that invests in information technology businesses. Voyager Capital helped incubate the Mebik.org movement. "The team at Mebik.org spent many years developing technology-enabled solutions at Fortune 50 companies and realized that by applying their expertise to this hard problem, they could develop leading tools to deliver free and transparent access to healthcare costs."
People need direct access to easy-to-understand and reliable medical price information. The American College of Physicians' recent report on healthcare transparency made several recommendations it believes to be important, including:
- The College supports the goal of price transparency for services and products provided by all healthcare stakeholders to patients/consumers.
- The College recommends that any methodology used to publicly report price is also transparent, and contains adequate protections to ensure the reporting of reliable and valid price information.
- The College recommends that price information provided to patients/consumers should be readily available, presented in a manner that is easily understood and reflective of its limitations.
Mebik.org addresses these recommendations by providing understandable healthcare cost information and translating medical language into common terms. The services offered on Mebik.org help patients make sense of their medical bills and associated costs.
To increase data relevancy, patients and doctors are encouraged to confidentially input cost information directly to Mebik.org where it is aggregated with the information from trusted sources. The proprietary algorithms then adjust the data as necessary to guarantee quality.
Government organizations, affinity groups, medical organizations, insurance providers, companies and other groups can also aggregate Mebik.org online services directly onto their website. Doing so would give their members or employees access to tips, cost data and nationwide and cross-community data processed by Mebik.org's patent-pending algorithms.
Built with patent-pending technology, Mebik.org is a free online social service designed to give people one-step access to relevant, timely and localized information about medical costs that will ultimately help them make better-informed decisions. Mebik.org translates often complex medical terms and codes into common language, gives people the opportunity to share information about special offers, provide tips on how to reduce medical bills or give advice on how to reduce insurance copayments. Mebik.org is about empowering people through knowledge to take control over their medical bills. Mebik.org is bringing transparency to healthcare costs (sm).