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Preparing for the rise of consumerism in healthcare: the billing experience

Tran, Amy N.D. (2019) Preparing for the rise of consumerism in healthcare: the billing experience. Master Essay, University of Pittsburgh.

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The overwhelming number of billing-related patient complaints at Allegheny Health Network (AHN) was impacting the patient financial experience so much that it caught the attention of the system’s Chief Operating Officer. Such experience contributes greatly to patients’ satisfaction with the Network; the probability that they will take care of their financial obligations fully; and the likelihood that they will return to the Network and/or recommend it to others.
The goals of this project, The Billing Experience, were to gain insights from areas relevant to the patient financial experience; conduct observations and interviews in order to understand various perspectives; execute analyses of data, market trends, and best practice; and provide leadership with recommendations to improve the patient financial experience. With the emergence of consumerism projected to be one of the most disruptive trends in the healthcare industry as a result of significant changes in its environment, recommendations were designed to provide them with a more ‘retail-style’ experience with the Network.
The outcome of the discussions and interviews suggest that while it is widely recognized that substantial issues exist within certain processes that negatively impact patient satisfaction and increase bad debt, the origins of these issues remain contested. Furthermore, changes in leadership and shifting priorities may be the cause of decreased momentum in actively focusing on improving the patient financial experience at this time. Despite this, there is a strong sense of desire among system leadership to align its strategies to address consumerism, and a commitment to making AHN the system of choice.
Significant evidence has been shown that as a result of high cost, patients have delayed or omitted seeking necessary medical care, or made the decision to skip appropriate dosages prescribed to them, which has the potential to be fatal. The public health relevance is apparent here because depending on pre-existing financial situations, the amount of care required, and the amount of lost wages for both the patient and the caregiver, the impact of medically-induced financial obligation and debt could be extremely detrimental to their health and well-being.


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Item Type: Other Thesis, Dissertation, or Long Paper (Master Essay)
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Tran, Amy N.D.ant115@pitt.eduant115
ContributionContributors NameEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairRohrer, Wesleywmrun@pitt.eduUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date: April 2019
Date Type: Submission
Number of Pages: 56
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Health Policy & Management
Degree: MHA - Master of Health Administration
Thesis Type: Master Essay
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: consumerism patient financial experience
Date Deposited: 08 Oct 2019 22:57
Last Modified: 08 Oct 2019 23:35


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