Patients Desire Easy Health Data Access But Prefer Better Privacy Protections

Morning Consult conducted a new survey on behalf of America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), which revealed that what patients want is quick access to their health information that is presented in a brief, quick to understand format. Nonetheless, patients and consumers know very well that the risks of cyberattacks and data breaches could result in the compromise of their private health data. 62% of the surveyed patients and consumers stated that they’re ready to forget about easy access to their health information as long as their health data have greater privacy protections.

Last November 2019, President Trump approved an Executive Order on Improving Price and Quality Transparency in American Healthcare to Put Patients First. Different governing bodies, including the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of the Treasury and the Department of Labor responded by proposing a new Transparency in Coverage Rule. The rule necessitates employer-based group health plans and medical insurance companies offering group and personal coverage to make known price and cost-sharing details to participants, enrollees, and beneficiaries first.

With that available information, patients become aware of how much they ought to pay to satisfy the deductible of their plan or co-insurance or co-pay prerequisites. Patients can easily compare costs.

The price of healthcare procedures is a major concern for patients. The percentage of poll respondents that stated they were very likely or somewhat likely to research the cost of a medical procedure or service that their medical insurance plan would cover are 52% and 22%, respectively. Those that said it was very likely or somewhat likely that they would choose a cheaper medical procedure than what a physician recommends is 68%. 66% of survey participants said they would think about seeing a specialist as per doctor’s recommendation if care quality is the same at a cheaper price.

Although quick access to cost details and better transparency are welcome, 3 in 4 people who participated in the poll mentioned they won’t support a federal rule that improves transparency, at the same time, increases insurance premiums.

With regards to acquiring details on medical treatments, patients prefer easy to understand data as opposed to complete data. 82% of adults mentioned that they give more value to applications and websites with concise, easy to understand data about medical treatment as opposed to complete data that is unclear.

The survey likewise showed there is good support for federal laws similar to HIPAA for technology organizations that gather or are given health information. 90% of participants said tech firms ought to comply with stringent specifications for privacy and security just like the instance with healthcare providers.