New Amazon Conglomeration Means Healthcare Players Must Adapt to Price Transparency or Face Extinction | Markets Insider

For some industry players, the writing is on the wall. Some insurance brokers have already adopted a payment model that pays them based on how much money they save companies rather than collecting a percentage of every premium. And bill collection agencies already in-house at hospitals are making the switch to other customer service occupations. But insurance carriers that don’t adapt to offer price comparison shopping options—instead of traditional “in-network” and “out-of-network” prices—will see customers flock to other companies where set costs for procedures and medications are readily available.

While it isn’t clear exactly how the new company would operate, there’s speculation that it might offer a solution similar to Amazon’s consumer-goods-competitive-pricing model. Amazon already boasts the largest direct-to-consumer marketplace online today, utilizing sophisticated search technologies to match consumers with results based on price, delivery, and verified consumer ratings for products and vendors. In partnership with Berkshire Hathaway (whose portfolio company, Geico, provides billions in direct-to-consumer insurance) and JPMorgan Chase (already a depository for Medicare and Medicaid funds and a brokerage firm for reimbursement payments to healthcare facilities and providers), Amazon is poised to create an online healthcare shopping platform. Healthcare providers and facilities will act as vendors, submitting their prices for procedures, medications, tests and bundles, along with location information.

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New Amazon Conglomeration Means Healthcare Players Must Adapt to Price Transparency or Face Extinction | Markets Insider.

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