NC health insurer posts cost data online

North Carolina's largest health insurer has begun posting prices online for hundreds of healthcare services and procedures, in a move which is likely to spark imitations by other competing health plans. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina hopes to see members calculate costs for procedures, prescription drugs, office visits and many other outpatient and hospital services. However, the health plan won't release data on specific doctors. According to the health plan, this is because execs wanted consumers to simply become educated generally about costs. However, observers have noted that it's more likely that the Blue plan was reluctant to highlight differences in rates, which could cause a civil war between doctors in its plans.  All told, an interesting if not too radical effort. What will be really interesting is when it posts data on how much it actually pays each doctor.

To find out more about this initiative:
- read this iHealthBeat piece

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