In a 2016 international survey, the percentage of adults who faced cost-related barriers to care was highest in the U.S. at 33 percent. These cost-related barriers were defined as being sick, but not visiting a doctor; skipping a medical test, treatment, or follow-up the doctor had recommended; skipping doses of medication to save money; or not filling prescriptions at all.
One of the things care coordination can do for your patients is help remove barriers to healthcare, such as cost concerns. Sometimes it’s a simple thing like helping patients compare medication prices among different pharmacies or finding prepackaged medications that save money. Other times it can be a little more complicated, like convincing patients they have to take action, even if that means costs are unavoidable.
A recent example of this occurred during a care call when a member told us her implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) was beeping from time to time. She said she hadn’t mentioned this fact to her cardiologist or contacted him about it because she was afraid whatever it took to solve the problem would cost her money.
Her CareSync nurse carefully explained the importance of getting this issue addressed and encouraged the member to call the ICD manufacturer’s device line. The member complied and within two days, she was in surgery, having her pacemaker replaced.
Ensuring a patient will act in their best interest isn’t always easy. But at CareSync, we know that sometimes all it takes to motivate them is a gentle push from someone who demonstrates they truly care.