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NH wins praise for access to health care information


July 26. 2016 8:42PM

CONCORD — New Hampshire received national praise — and tied for top score — helping residents make educated choices on health care, according to an annual report card.

“Only three states — New Hampshire, Colorado and Maine — received an A for providing detailed pricing on a variety of procedures through easy-to-use public websites, backed by rich data sources,” said the report by two nonprofit organizations focused on health reform, the Catalyst for Payment Reform and Health Care Incentives Improvement Institute.

The report card gave 43 states an F for “failing to meet even minimum standards.” In 2015, New Hampshire was the only state to receive an A rating.

New Hampshire offers a free health price transparency website, www.NHHealthCost.org, which was developed by the New Hampshire Insurance Department in 2007. The website uses actual, anonymous paid claims data from insurance companies to show patients, both insured and uninsured, estimated prices for 100 procedures at medical facilities around the state.

“People in the Granite State do their research before any important purchase, such as buying a car,” said New Hampshire Insurance Commissioner Roger Sevigny. “They ought to have that same right when it comes to their health care expenses. We created the HealthCost website for them.”

NH HealthCost shows a precise estimate of total costs of a procedure, including physician, lab and facility fees.

New Hampshire residents can use the site to compare the price of health care services, including estimates for out-of-pocket costs — and see how they vary among doctors, hospitals and outpatient facilities.

Earlier this year, the department relaunched the website after a redesign and major updates, including almost doubling the number of medical procedures available and adding pharmacy retail charges and information on dental procedures, physical therapy, behavioral health, chiropractic care, sleep studies and lab tests.


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