Blue Arrow Awards 2017 - Societal Influence Entry
Pricing information in private healthcare has traditionally been opaque and difficult to figure out. Prices are formed in complex manner from multiple costs, where some of the costs might be hidden from consumer or made difficult to find.
“The lack of price transparency is a problem in private healthcare” - Finnish Consumer Alliance, Kuluttajaliitto
“It is virtually impossible to compare private healthcare prices, as comprehensive pricing information is not available” - Social Insurance Institution (KELA)
Laakarihinta.fi was born to correct the situation and help the society in large by making healthcare services, their pricing and their contents visible. By aiming to always present the net cost with all hidden and added fees included we help not only the citizens but competitive service providers through cost-efficient customer acquisition.
For over a year now Laakarihinta.fi has provided healthcare pricing transparency. By providing a fast and reliable service we have been able to give individual citizens a possibility to make educated decisions based on objective data when it comes to their health care. On our first year in 2016, healthcare prices were compared over 150 000 times.
By providing price data we help lower-income citizens to find affordable, high-quality private health care suitable for their budget. While comparison helps consumers it also enhances fairness and competition in the field by providing small and medium-sized enterprises tools to compete with large established companies and health care chains.
Laakarihinta.fi has an efficient support for locales. Currently the service supports Finnish and English. Swedish will be added later this spring. Support for multiple languages improves accessibility among ethnic minorities such as immigrants and bridges gaps between finnish speaking and non-finnish speaking residents.
Laakarihinta.fi will be even more valuable for the society in the near future due to upcoming reform of social and health care services in Finland effective from year 2019 onwards. The reform shifts decision making to citizens who will need data to base their decisions on. Thus, we are now also focusing on measuring patient satisfaction among other quality metrics and building an aggregated online booking solution for healthcare. Consumer empowering tools like Laakarihinta.fi will be important for the success of the reform.
Next steps include measuring customer satisfaction and online booking.