Price Transparency: It’s in the Best Interest of Patients and Providers

“In all my years in health IT this is one of the most exciting and most rapidly adopted clinical decision support tools I’ve ever been associated with,” said Andrew Mellin, MD and vice president of Medical Informatics at Surescripts, referring to Surescripts’ prescription price transparency tool

He and Sharon Howard, fellow HIT leader at Surescripts, sat down recently to talk about Surescripts Real-Time Prescription Benefit and how it helps deliver patient-specific prescription benefit and cost information into the e-prescribing workflow. Specifically, they shared their perspectives on how these tools benefit both providers and patients, which physicians can adopt these tools into their practices and how patients should feel empowered to have the prescription cost conversation with their healthcare provider.

“When I was a practicing physician, I just thought about the best clinical choice for the patient. Non-adherence and cost weren’t on my mind,” Andrew explained.

My, how times have changed.

“I was at an industry event and had the opportunity to hear a physician tell a story that really hit home,” Sharon shared. She went on to recount that the physician’s patient came into the office and, though she’d been on a medication for quite some time, lab results indicated that adherence could be an issue. After some prodding, the patient apologized and broke down in tears, saying, “I can’t afford my medication so I’ve been cutting my pills in half to make them last longer.”

While these scenarios are all too common in healthcare today, Surescripts is working hard to make them few and far between.

Sharon and Andrew also discussed how price transparency tools like Real-Time Prescription Benefit can help reduce provider burnout. “This technology is making life better by removing administrative burden and eliminating rework,” explained Andrew.

“As costs of medication increase, so does the need for tools like this,” Andrew said.

Though adoption of technology can be challenging, he goes on to say that, in order to make it easier, there are three things Surescripts takes into consideration during product development.

Check out this video to discover what those three things are.

If you’re interested in learning more about our work to advance and deliver price transparency at the point of care, check out our 2019 Impact Report: Prescription Price Transparency. And follow us on Facebook to get all the details on our next Facebook Premiere video.

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