More than 33 million Americans who have high-deductible health plans, also known as “HDHP” policies, struggle to find local doctors within their budget because healthcare costs have previously remained mysterious, until after one reaches the specialist’s office. To solve this dilemma, Doctible.com has launched a search platform that lists the costs of procedures and checkups upfront so that patients understand prices before booking their appointments. Plus, clients can also quickly search for and compare doctors by price, reviews, location and specialty.
Founded in 2013, the “Doctible” website now serves the San Diego area — with future plans to expand and eventually create a nationwide healthcare search engine to help people make faster, better and more affordable decisions about their options for a wide variety of medical services. Here are the principles that make it work and the positive changes it can lead to:
The solution lies in the search engine’s transparent facts
The Doctible medical-services search engine instantly pulls together all the key information about the type of doctor someone is looking for in a list that takes less than a minute to scan, allowing users to find the right doctor and make a booking more quickly and efficiently without regretting their decision later. The design is simple and powerful. Anyone can get fast results by just entering their zip code, the type of doctor they need to see and the type of procedure they want. Instantly, visitors get a list of doctors that shows exactly how far away they are from one’s home, how much the doctor charges in cash for the procedure, their average insurance price and their ratings based on past reviews from real patients.
As a result, the doctor-patient relationship becomes more honest and direct right from the beginning, and clients walk into the physician’s office with less stress about payments and clear expectations.
Currently, Doctible includes a network of 13 different types of specialists: chiropractors, podiatrists, optometrists, psychiatrists, dentists, dermatologists, acupuncturists and audiologists. Patients don’t need to sign up for any subscriptions or pay any fees to use Doctible, and the search results collect data from more than 500 licensed doctors throughout the San Diego area.
Additionally, booking an appointment through Doctible can provide a discount of up to 40 percent with many doctors.
What does this new healthcare-search platform mean for the future?
Ajit Viswanathan, co-founder of Doctible, describes the vision behind the website that’s setting a new future trend: “Traditionally, people for the most part have been cushioned from high healthcare costs through good insurance plans. Because of the high influx of high-deductible plans, consumers have a greater need to understand their costs prior to the visit to ensure they are not left with sticker shock when they receive the bill. Our mission is to ensure that everyone has access to information to make educated decisions.”
Ultimately, the power of Doctible to help others make more educated decisions about which healthcare specialist to visit is bringing greater visibility to the way each doctor handles their clients and how much they charge for their services. In the long term, Doctible has the potential to prevent needless overcharging for minor procedures and also alert customers to avoid low-quality services from any under-qualified medical practitioners.
The independent reviews of each doctor make them more accountable for their standards of care, too, thereby gradually raising the bar to provide better services for everyone.
This is a sponsored post.