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Finding doctors who know how to have the “cost conversation”

cost conversation

We’re excited to announce our partnership with Costs of Care to highlight clinicians who are trained in cost conversations

It’s official: the cost of healthcare is now the top financial concern among Americans. From rising premiums to surprise bills, healthcare is increasingly expensive, and sadly, often prohibitively expensive.

Over the last year, our team at Amino analyzed $1.8 trillion in healthcare expenses to help people estimate their healthcare costs and reduce the anxiety surrounding their finances. Most recently, we put a price tag on hospitals with Facility Cost Ratings, and expanded our cost estimates to cover more than 100 procedures, from hernia surgery to the HPV vaccine to a spine MRI.

Today, we’re excited to expand the reach and impact of these price transparency efforts with a new partner, Costs of Care, a national nonprofit that helps patients, clinicians, and health systems deliver more affordable care.

We believe that empowering consumers with price transparency is a critical step to reducing healthcare costs. But it’s not enough. Bank-breaking decisions can often take place at the point of care, specifically in the doctor’s office or at the hospital bed. Doctors often have options to help make care more affordable, but unfortunately, not all are equipped with the skills and resources to have helpful conversations with patients about these options.

Costs of Care trains clinicians on how to have the “cost conversation”—a dialogue between clinicians and patients that is an increasingly common occurrence in clinics, hospitals, and pharmacies across the United States. The ultimate goal of these conversations is to help patients avoid unnecessary tests and treatments.

Building on the work of the ABIM Foundation and Consumer Reports’ Choosing Wisely® campaign, Costs of Care produced a series of free, CME approved, video modules that demonstrate common pitfalls in having these conversations as well as practical solutions. Clinicians can view these videos on The Doctor’s Channel, a video site for medical professionals that has been providing clinicians with timely, practical and “to the point” content in the form of educational, lifestyle and free CME videos since 2007.

As clinicians complete the courses in the next few weeks, when you search for care on Amino.com, any doctor that has completed their Costs of Care “Value Conversations” training will have their accreditation acknowledged on their Amino doctor profile. This acknowledgment stretches across all specializations on Amino.com from family doctors to OBGYNs to endocrinologists.

cost of care certification on amino

Just as any doctor proudly displays their degrees acknowledging their technical expertise, they can now proudly display their ability to help consumers understand the financial side of their practice. Likewise, patients used to choosing their doctors by experience and expertise on Amino now can choose their doctor with additional criteria—whether or not he or she can have the “cost conversation.” It’s a small but important step in elevating cost as a key factor in all healthcare decisions, especially at the point of care.

To learn more about this initiative, visit costsofcare.org or read about the history in Health Affairs. We’ll also be at SXSW this year with Costs of Care discussing how to make healthcare price transparency actionable. Hope to see you there!

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