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Scary Financial Challenges for 2014

Rene Letourneau, for HealthLeaders Media, December 9, 2013

"A lot of it is coming down to educating patients prior to service and at the point of service," he says. "When they go to have a procedure done or a test done or for an office visit, having the patient understand their financial responsibility will be key."

However, even with outreach efforts to educate patients, Hulefeld says there is still reason for concern among provider organizations.

"The worry is that you can do upfront education, but when a patient uses services is when the rubber is going to meet the road," he says. "I'm not sure patients are really going to understand what it is they are buying on the exchange and what their benefits are."

"The onus is going to be on the provider," he adds. "I've described it as if someone selects a high-deductible plan, the provider is ultimately the insurer for their care. It's not really the insurer that is taking on the risk for a policy with a $4,000 deductible. The risk has been passed on to the provider."

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