Survey shows consumers and healthcare professionals worried about healthcare system

Nov. 21, 2019

Wolters Kluwer, Health released new data from a survey of nearly 2,000 consumers, hospital executives, doctors and nurses in the U.S. on attitudes surrounding breakdowns in care, how costs shape care decisions and the influence of a broad lack of transparency within the healthcare system. Findings from the report, “Mending HealthCare in America 2020: Consumers & Cost,” showed alignment and deep divisions in how patients and providers view healthcare.

“Leading up to the 2020 presidential election, there has been a shift in attitudes surrounding out of control healthcare costs and a complicated and opaque healthcare system that erodes the trust of consumers and providers. Our national survey echoes this dissatisfaction, but also illuminates that those on the front lines of delivering care are taking diverging, and sometimes conflicting, paths to mitigate their concerns and prioritize actions,” said Diana Nole, CEO of Wolters Kluwer, Health.

The study examines where each stakeholder observes breakdowns, inconsistencies and a lack of transparency throughout the system and, subsequently, how they make care choices around those perceptions.

Key survey findings include:

Healthcare cost and transparency

·        98% of survey respondents across the board agree that healthcare is inconsistent and costs and care vary by location, health system and even within departments at the same hospital.

·         Two-thirds of consumers don’t believe they would be charged the same for a treatment or condition regardless of where they received care

·         79% of physicians and nurses acknowledge that cost to the patient influences what treatments they recommend.

·         87% of all respondents agree there is a lack of transparency in the pricing of healthcare services, including those who are prescribing care or medications.

Government election and healthcare policy

·         89% of consumers believe the healthcare system needs an overhaul regardless of who wins in 2020.          

·         73% of all survey respondents say the issue of healthcare will be a main factor when they vote for a presidential candidate.

·         78% of all respondents say they will vote for the presidential candidate who will respond to rising healthcare premiums and high deductibles.

Healthcare choice

·         52% of consumers say the greatest risk to them is when they’re prescribed medications and don’t fill them because of cost.

·         61% of millennials did not go forward with a medical treatment because they were concerned about the cost—nearly double the percentage of baby boomers (31%).

·         Four in five consumers are likely to travel past the hospital closest to them to one farther away that has a better reputation (78%).

Healthcare gaps

·         Misaligned care teams (93% agree)

·         Gaps in patient health information to deliver better care (88%)

·         Poor care handoffs between professionals (85%)

·         Lack of information transparency (53%) – patient data is lost in transition across care settings

Wolters Kluwer, Health has the report.