New Coalition Advocates for Better Healthcare Transparency

A new coalition of consumers, healthcare providers, and industry launched the Clear Choices Campaign on April 9 to advocate for more transparent, accountable, and consumer-friendly health markets.

A new coalition of consumers, healthcare providers, and industry launched the Clear Choices Campaign on April 9 to advocate for more transparent, accountable, and consumer-friendly health markets.

One of the driving forces behind the campaign is the lack of clear pricing information in healthcare with costs varying within markets by as much as 700%, according to the coalition. The campaign was launched by representatives from AARP, Aetna, the Ambulatory Surgery Center Association, Novo Nordisk, and the National Consumers League.

"Our members come from all sides of the political debate," Joel White, president of Clear Choices, said in a statement. "But we all agree that consumers should have access to affordable healthcare—and that transparency will enhance choice and competition to make healthcare more affordable."

There are 3 areas of focus for the coalition’s campaign: better tools, such as directories of exchange plan providers or searchable formularies, so consumers can make better informed decisions; improved data in the hands of experts to power consumer tools; and more competitive markets where consumers can use comparative tools.

"As consumers take more responsibility for healthcare decision-making, the demand for personalized, accurate information on healthcare costs and quality is gaining momentum," said Chris Riedl of Aetna.

The coalition has outlined 4 opportunities that it will advocate for:

  • Provide up-front information on plan choices
  • Provide up-front information on healthcare providers
  • Improve the quality and efficiency measures used to grade healthcare providers
  • Expand data-sharing programs

"Up to $8 trillion of the $40 trillion the United States will spend on healthcare over the next decade will pay for unnecessary services or to treat preventable conditions," said Andrew Scholnick, Senior Legislative Representative from AARP. "Our nation can't afford such waste. To ensure the sustainability of programs like Medicare—and our entire economy—we must capitalize on the power of data to create a more functional healthcare system."