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New Study: Majority Of Americans Value Privacy And Affordability Over Transparency

posted by Cathryn Donaldson

on January 23, 2020

3 out of 5 Americans believe stronger protections of privacy are more important than easier access to health data

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Patients and consumers deserve better access to personalized, actionable health care information to empower them to make better, more informed decisions – but it should not drive up health care costs or compromise the privacy of their personal health data. That’s according to a new nationwide poll of patients and consumers from Morning Consult, conducted on behalf of America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP).

A strong majority (62%) of patients want their data and privacy protected more than ever, even if it means foregoing easier access to their health information. Further, 3 in 4 adults would not support a new federal regulation that makes it easier to find the cost of medical procedures if it also raises insurance premiums.

The study reviewed a wide range of issues related to transparency, privacy and affordability, including ease of access to health information, value of services, protection of privacy, and ways to access health information. Other major takeaways from the poll include:

  • The vast majority (82%) of adults want their health care information delivered in a way that is more concise and simpler to understand.
  • An overwhelming majority (90%) reported they want technology companies held to the same high standard and scrutiny as health insurance providers when it comes to protecting their information.
  • A strong majority (66%) of adults said that they would consider making an appointment with a different specialist if they knew they would receive the same quality of care, but at a lower cost.

“These findings from patients and consumers are significant,” said Matt Eyles, AHIP President and CEO. “When it comes to transparency in health care, patients overwhelmingly want two things – for the information to be clear, concise, and customized, and for their privacy to be protected. Any new rules must ensure we protect patient privacy, reduce health care costs, and get personalized information into the hands of patients.”

Today, health insurance providers already offer tools and services that ensure the people they serve have personalized, actionable information to help them make the best health decisions for them and their family. These tools include:

  • Cost estimator tools
  • Prescription drug cost tools
  • Online provider directories
  • Telehealth services

Further, they are available at patients’ fingertips through:

  • Mobile apps
  • Secure member portals
  • 24/7 customer service lines

The full methodology and survey results can be found here: http://www.ahip.org/wp-content/uploads/AHIP_Healthcare-Care-Cost-Transparency.pdf

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About AHIP

AHIP is the national association whose members provide coverage for health care and related services to hundreds of millions of Americans every day. Through these offerings, we improve and protect the health and financial security of consumers, families, businesses, communities and the nation. We are committed to market-based solutions and public-private partnerships that improve affordability, value, access, and well-being for consumers. Visit www.ahip.org for more information.

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