Navigating the healthcare system as a health IT professional has its advantages. When we asked Ian Vankirk, Senior Business Analyst at Allscripts, if there were any issues during his last pharmacy visit, he answered, “There were not—mainly because I know what I’m doing … I was able to find a coupon and a lower price at a different pharmacy, so I was able to switch everything over, and I think it saved me half the cost.”
Healthcare consumerism is a good thing. Patients should be engaged in their care, and proactive in getting the most value for their money. But Vankirk knows healthcare’s behind-the-scenes intricacies and the burden and confusion patients still face in making sure they’re getting the best deal on their needed medications. Many just don’t know their options, or that drug costs can vary substantially between therapeutic equivalents, days supply or even pharmacy location. And most aren’t aware of the tools their prescriber can access to do this work for them—and with them—all before they’ve left the office for the pharmacy.
Vankirk’s vision of a future where price transparency is the norm is one in which prescribers are empowered to have the cost conversation, and to make sure their patient isn’t paying more out of pocket than they need to. And technology is available now to help them to do just that.
“With a click of a button, they can switch the pharmacy and send it to where it would be more affordable for the patient if that’s the path they want to choose.”
Watch more stories from our series, Inside the Patient Experience, and visit Intelligence in Action to see how prescription price transparency at the point of care is giving prescribers the power to help more patients afford their medications.