We’ve all heard the stories or know someone with a shocking medical bill story–a family member who received a $7,000 bill after an MRI or a friend who was forced to pay an astronomical out-of-pocket price after a CT scan.
At Knew Health, we know how important it is to access affordable medical imaging when you need it most. In this blog post, we’ll explore everything you need to know about medical imaging and how to access it as a self-pay patient with Knew Health.
What is imaging, and why might you need it?
Medical imaging is a modern approach to diagnosing various health conditions and is sometimes referred to as “diagnostic imaging.” It’s a non-invasive way for your medical provider to see inside your body to understand better and make a diagnosis or recommend treatment. Medical imaging can be life-changing for many people seeking answers.
Ultrasounds, x-rays, CT scans, and MRIs are all examples of medical imaging your doctor may recommend in order to get a detailed picture of the inside of your body. The professionals who take the image are known as radiologists, and they may use a different technology depending on the needed image.
How medical imaging works with most health options
When using most healthcare options, there are some factors to consider.
- First are networks. Most options will require you to find an imaging facility within an approved network.
- Second is coverage. Many healthcare options will only pay for your imaging procedure if deemed “medically necessary.” It can be difficult knowing that your determination for coverage lies in somebody else’s decision.
- Finally, are your out-of-pocket costs. If your healthcare option approves your procedure, you will need to meet certain out-of-pocket expenses before your healthcare option “covers” the rest. You should also consider the copays and coinsurance costs that could accompany your procedure. It is common to believe that medical imaging is only possible with major healthcare options. However, read on, and you will see that this couldn’t be any further from the truth.
How medical imaging works with a Knew Health Membership
You should never have to sacrifice your health or the quality of your care for any reason. Knew Health Members can expect a process that is uncomplicated, affordable, and convenient. Because everyone’s health journey looks different, we’ll show you three examples of how the process might look if you find yourself in need of medical imaging:
Jack injures his wrist while playing football. He visits his nearest urgent care, which costs him $160. The urgent care doctor orders an x-ray of his wrist, and Jack is able to get the image at the urgent care facility. He informs the medical staff beforehand that he is a self-pay patient and is relieved they have special pricing for patients like Jack. Jack pays $95, receives the x-ray, and has the results sent to his primary care doctor. He schedules an appointment to review the results and discuss the treatment plan and pays $138.
His total out-of-pocket cost is $393.
Ami injures her ankle while playing soccer. She immediately calls her Direct Primary Care practitioner, who can see her the same day, which is common with DPC practices. There is no cost to see her doctor since she has a DPC membership. Ami’s DPC doctor orders an X-ray image and points her in the direction of several imaging facilities in the area.
Ami calls around, then schedules the appointment, and pays $105 out-of-pocket for the image because she is a self-pay patient. The image is sent to her DPC provider, who determines the best treatment plan for her injury is to wear an ankle brace for the next six weeks. She orders the wrist brace online for $40. Ami schedules a follow-up with her DPC six weeks later.
Her total out-of-pocket cost is $145.
Luis breaks his arm while playing lacrosse and goes to the emergency room. The ER doctor orders an MRI image to be done at the hospital. The image shows a bad break, and Luis is referred to an orthopedic surgeon.
Luis receives general anesthesia, has successful surgery, and is prescribed medication for the pain. Luis goes home and schedules several physical therapy appointments and a follow-up with his primary care doctor over the next several months.
This scenario would typically cost Luis thousands of dollars, even with most healthcare options. Thankfully he is a Knew Health Member and selected the Initial Unshareable Amount of $500 when he joined last year. His medical cost sharing community shares in the costs associated with the injury after the initial $500.
His total out-of-pocket cost for the medical need is $500.
Flexibility and Affordability
Knew Health understands that every medical situation is unique, so your options for accessing medical imaging are flexible. Whether you are in a pinch and find yourself in the ER or have time to research facilities, the financial burden of medical imaging and all of the medically necessary costs of your medical need will not be higher than the IUA you choose, and in some cases (as mentioned above) can be even less.
In today’s healthcare landscape, being a savvy consumer is more important than ever. Armed with the right tools and information, you can navigate the world of medical imaging and avoid unnecessary costs. By choosing Knew Health, you can take control of your healthcare expenses. If you’re ready to save on your medical imaging and other important medical needs, call Knew Health today at 855-542-0050 or schedule a 1-on-1 phone call to learn more about our membership plans and how we can help you achieve your healthcare goals.