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New Study Reveals 62% of Americans Don’t Trust Their Health Plan to Provide Accurate Care Options

Ribbon Health (Ribbon), a leader in healthcare provider data management, today announced findings from a new consumer survey report: How Health Plans Can Use Data to Unlock Better Care. The research study conducted by OnePoll surveyed 1,000 consumers across the United States on their healthcare experiences and revealed that 62% of Americans do not trust their health plan when searching for care.

The American healthcare system has a long history of patient dissatisfaction. One major pain point lies in care navigation, as more than half of provider listings have at least one inaccuracy, leaving people with incomplete information and burdening their access to high-quality care. Ribbon’s research found that more than one-third (38%) of people have had a negative healthcare experience due to incorrect provider information on their health plan’s website. When people have negative experiences finding care or are matched with the wrong provider, they are more likely to opt out of the healthcare system. This puts them at risk for worsening health, more costly care down the road, and increases future expenses for health plans.

“For decades, people have accepted inconveniences like not knowing how much their healthcare bill will cost or a lack of basic information about the provider treating them. Care seekers are just like consumers in any other industry, and they deserve insight into metrics like cost, reviews, quality ratings and the many other important factors we consider when making a big purchase,” said Nate Maslak, CEO and co-founder of Ribbon. “This type of information is standard in other industries, and it comes as no surprise that Americans are craving better information in order to make informed healthcare decisions. Improved, transparent data provides an opportunity to connect people with providers and health plans they can trust.”

Building a positive healthcare experience

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The study reveals that the most important factor in creating a positive healthcare experience is having a personalized health plan, as reported by 53% of respondents. Americans also value receiving care from doctors with good bedside manner (48%), feeling better quickly (38%), securing an appointment quickly (33%) and out-of-pocket cost (31%).

When it comes to searching for the right provider, almost half of respondents (49%) identified a provider’s level of experience treating their specific healthcare needs as the most important factor. The other top factors were convenient location (42%) and cost (40%).

The trust gap between members and health plans

According to Ribbon’s research, members need to see a few key changes to build trust with their health plan. A majority of respondents (66%) shared that they would have increased trust in their health plan with more accurate information on providers, meaning that people expect a centralized, accurate and detailed source of truth and view this as a major factor in improving the quality of their experience.

Beyond accuracy, health plan directories often lack critical information on providers like cost and quality of care. Americans are increasingly searching for more inclusive and innovative health offerings, and 61% view provider information like demographics, quality ratings and cost of care as “somewhat” or “very” important. With only 28% of respondents reporting that they are likely to use their plan’s website to search for a provider, health plans have an opportunity to implement technology and infrastructure behind the scenes that will create a seamless member experience on the front end.

What this means for health plans

With 30% of provider data churning every year, provider data management is not an easy problem to solve. Health plans must get ahead of member concerns to ensure retention and better understand what provider information is important to them, what factors will lead to increased trust in the system, and what data they view as key to driving personalized and inclusive care. This research report synthesizes findings directly from Americans and offers a roadmap for health plans to build better member retention and engagement through improved provider data infrastructure.

Download the full survey for more key stats: How Health Plans Can Use Data to Unlock Better Care.

Methodology

Market research company OnePoll surveyed 1,000 consumers in October 2022 across the United States on their experience receiving healthcare, what’s most important to them when searching for and choosing care, and which factors they view as key to a more personalized and inclusive care experience. The survey was posed to OnePoll’s group of general population panelists and remained open until 1,000 survey responses were complete.

About Ribbon Health

Ribbon Health partners with innovators to transform how healthcare decisions are made. Ribbon’s data platform fuels healthcare enterprises with actionable provider information, including insurance coverage, prices, and performance. With Ribbon, healthcare enterprises can empower people to make the most informed decisions about their care by finding trusted and affordable providers. To learn more about Ribbon Health’s suite of solutions, visit www.ribbonhealth.com or find us on LinkedIn and Twitter.

Healthcare Business Today is a leading online publication that covers the business of healthcare. Our stories are written from those who are entrenched in this field and helping to shape the future of this industry. Healthcare Business Today offers readers access to fresh developments in health, medicine, science, and technology as well as the latest in patient news, with an emphasis on how these developments affect our lives.

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