Seton announces new partnership with healthcare savings provider
Fri, 2016-06-17 05:00 News Staff
By LYNETTE SOWELL
On Wednesday afternoon Seton Medical Center in Harker Heights announced a new partnership that can help uninsured and underinsured in the local area.
Seton is now a provider member of MDSave, an online referral service in which patients can select and pay for medical procedures, laboratory tests, certain office visits and more at a reduced price, which can be as much as 40-60 percent.
“Some have referred to this technology as ‘Expedia for healthcare’, bridging the gap between out-of-pocket costs and high deductible,” said Matt Maxfield, CEO of Seton Harker Heights. Maxfield, along with George Fayer, CFO of Seton Harker Heights, made the announcement via a press conference because they want to get the word out to the local community.
“It empowers patients to take more control of their healthcare,” Maxfield added. “(Patients can) geographically search by procedure, provider, specialty or ailment and compare pricing.”
Patients can then select the procedure their physician has ordered, add it to their cart, and then check out and pay online. They will then be contacted by Seton to set up the appointment for the procedure or lab work to be performed.
Seton is the only provider in the Killeen area to be a member of MDSave, with the other closest healthcare facility being in Cedar Park. Patients can see physicians anywhere they choose, however.
George Fayer, CFO for Seton Harker Heights, explained MDSave also results in what’s called bundled payments for healthcare, making it easier for patients.
“Bundled payments is really all inclusive pricing. Usually when you come to the hospital and you get an MRI, you get the hospital’s bill, you get a radiology bill. If it’s a surgery, you get the surgeon’s bill, the anesthesia bill, and you get the pathologist’s bill,” Fayer said. “(MDSave) is all in one pricing, for one price, when you set up through MD Save.”
Fayer added that MDSave also works with a finance company so patients can finance procedures from $2,000 up to $35,000. Otherwise, patients pay MDSave up front for their procedures or tests, and Seton receives its payment the following week.
Currently this does not include emergency room treatments, but outpatient procedures, tests or surgeries ordered by a physician. Seton also plans to add procedures and tests as the need arises.
Fayer said those with insurance who use MDSave can have that amount credited toward their deductible, with assistance from MDSave.
Signing up for MDSave is free, and the company is offering $25 off the first procedure for those who register for an online account at www.mdsave.com.
Maxfield gave an example of a teacher in a local school district who couldn’t afford the cost of the insurance to cover her entire family, so she chose to not buy health insurance.
“Then she tore her rotator cuff and needed surgery. knowing we were about to launch this product, we provided a fully bundled price for that patient for that surgery,” Maxfield said. Through MDSave, he said she was able to get the surgery performed for less than $6,000. “It’s a pretty great way for that patient who would have otherwise fallen into a noninsured category and had a very large bill.”
Maxfield said often those who are uninsured or uninsured will forego a procedure or test simply because they can’t afford it. With MDSave, Seton’s hope is to help patients to have affordable access to care.
“At Seton we’re always looking for new ways to make our patients’ lives easier and our services better.
We’re here to help our neighbors in the community, regardless whether or not they’re patients and we call that nursing the Seton spirit.”