The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) released report on public reporting of cost measures in health as part of ithe Effective Health Care Program. This report documented current practices for public reporting Web sites that included measures of costs of health care providers, and assessed if these practices are consumer centered. The report concludes that several factors limit the effectiveness of current public reporting of costs practices. These include a focus on charges (rather than consumers’ out-of-pocket expenses), heterogeneity and ambiguity in the cost measures and data sources, and a lack of consumer-centered interfaces that allow the customization of searches that are relevant to consumers. Other limiting factors are the paucity of Web sites that provide cost and quality data, a lack of public awareness. and the need for research demonstrating the impact of publicly reported cost measures.
AHRQ Releases Report on Public Reporting of Cost Measures in Health
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