Productivity Commission calls for improved medical specialist and hospital performance and pricing transparency

Matthew Koce, CEO of Members Health has welcomed calls by the Productivity Commission for better publically available information on hospital and clinician performance and pricing.

“Consumers are completely in the dark when it comes to making an informed choice around their healthcare.”

“Publically available information on medical specialist and hospital performance and pricing is simply not available.”

“Consumers deserve to have access to basic information around things like complication and infection rates before they go under the knife.”

“Putting your life in the hands of a surgeon is a big leap of faith and consumers deserve to have access to all the information needed to make fully informed choices around their care.”

“The Alliance of Members Health funds only exist to serve consumers. They are not-for-profit, member owned and community based. We are very concerned that some surgeons charge patients thousands of dollars more than the recommended rate without delivering superior outcomes.”

“The Productivity Commission is to be commended for calling on Government to facilitate the provision of publically available data to patients so they can compare between providers, on clinical outcomes and the wide variation in out of pocket charges between specialists.”

“Other countries have shown that it is possible to publish better information on individual providers to help empower patients and assist general practitioners to support patient choice. There is also evidence that publishing more information would prompt providers to engage in greater self-improvement activity.”

“The patient should always come first. The fact that Australia is lagging behind the rest of the world is an embarrassment that needs to be addressed as an urgent priority”

“Members Health fully supports the Productivity Commissions recommendation that the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare transform the MyHospitals website into a vehicle that better supports choice by patients, and encourages self-improvement by individual hospitals, specialists and allied health professionals.”

In the meantime, to help avoid nasty out of pocket surprises, always consult your health fund before seeing a medical specialist.

The full Productivity Commission report can be found here .

Members Health is the peak industry body for 23 health insurers which are not-for-profit, member-owned and community based. In all, the Members Health funds provide private health insurance to over 1.7 million Australians.

A pdf version of the media release is available here: -Media Release- Productivity Commission calls for improved medical specialist and hospital performance and pricing transparency