Aetna, Humana, and UnitedHealth Agree to Share Data with HCCI to Give Consumers a Free, Comprehensive Source for Comparing Healthcare Prices and Quality

Scheduled to launch in early 2015, the Health Care Cost Institute’s free online tool will give consumers access to data on provider prices and quality It’s a significant sign of the times when three of the nation’s biggest health insurance companies agree to share data on healthcare prices and utilization specifically so that consumers can access this information. This will advance price transparency. It will also put more pressure on clinical laboratories to make it easy for consumers to see...

Consumers May Soon Have a Home Blood Collection Kit That Allows Them to Monitor and Quantify Damage to Their DNA

Exogen uses crowdfunding to both collect needed specimens and raise capital to pursue FDA clearance for its proposed medical laboratory test that would identify an individual’s damaged DNA It might be coming soon to a pharmacy or other retail store near you: a medical laboratory test kit allows consumers to test themselves for damaged DNA. This bold new world for genetic testing is the vision of a new company in San Francisco called Exogen Biotechnology. This startup business was co-founded by...

Castlight Health Offers Employers a Cloud-based Price Transparency Tool to Help Employees Shop for Low-Cost, High Quality Health Services

Similar to Oscar Healthcare in New York, this California-based enterprise technology company offers services to make it easy for individuals to see providers’ prices, including medical laboratory test prices Another company has entered the marketplace with their unorthodox business model to support health insurance programs. One cornerstone feature is a tool that enables both employers and beneficiaries to see the prices of different providers. This young player in the health benefits...

Several of Becker’s Top 2014 Health Information Technology ‘Game Changer’ Trends Have Major Implications for the Nation’s Clinical Pathology Laboratories

In particular, medical laboratories and pathology groups should be doing better at using information technology to meet the needs of consumers and to support physician workflow Improving patient-provider communication and speeding clinician workflow are two of the top 2014 game changers in healthcare information technology (HIT) cited by a recent report. Each of these top 2014 game changers can be expected to change how patients and physicians interact with their clinical laboratory and...

In 2013, Healthcare Experienced Largest Drop in Job Growth Since 1990 and Hospitals Are Shedding Jobs; These Trends Are Likely to Mean Less Resources for Hospital Laboratories

Market indicators support predictions of tougher financial times ahead for hospital-based clinical laboratories and pathology groups  New statistics for 2013 on employment in the healthcare and hospital sectors show the lowest rates of growth since 1990. This is a signal to pathologists and clinical laboratory executives that much belt-tightening is taking place by all types of providers. For 2013, the healthcare sector added just 271,000 jobs. This was 2% less than the annual average since...