How healthcare payments are evolving in 2020

From price transparency for consumers to healthcare data security concerns, see how healthcare payments are evolving in today’s new normal.

Tags: Healthcare, Payments
Published: July 13, 2020

Based on a recent U.S. Bank survey of healthcare consumers and Healthcare Information Technology (HIT) company executives, the 2020 Healthcare Payments Insight Survey Report, there are several challenges and opportunities around patient communications and payment options.

For healthcare companies, implementing payments innovations like online portals, pay by text, and contactless payments can greatly increase patient engagement. The infographic below highlights some of the insights from the survey that could increase efficiency and ultimately benefit the bottom line.


Infographic - How health plans are evolving
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Learn what consumers want to better serve your patients

Care affordability impacts not only access to treatment, but also patient fi­nancial responsibility, which in turn affects healthcare provider operations.

This is a chance for providers to boost patient satisfaction and improve their ability to pay medical expenses.

Based on insights from our new survey of healthcare consumers and Healthcare Information Technology (HIT) company executives, there may be some meaningful ways you can better serve your patients.

The patient experience

67% of consumers worry they won’t be able to afford a surprise medical bill.

40% of respondents indicated they had been surprised by an unexpectedly high medical bill in the last 12 months – down from 59% last year.

70% of consumers say healthcare payments are most difficult when compared to other industries - up significantly from 48% from last year.

What do patients want from providers?

Cost information

33% of consumers rely on healthcare provider staff to give them cost information while at the health facility.

18% call the provider's office before the visit.

39% say they either don’t seek this information out or don’t have a consistent source.

When a medical cost is deemed too high by a consumer, 42% talk to their healthcare provider about less expensive treatment options, and 27% choose to delay or cancel the service.


64% made a payment at their provider's office.

36% mailed a check to make a payment.

Payment Innovation

While the numbers differ, the majority of both consumers (67%) and HIT company professionals (92%) say healthcare is keeping pace with other industries when it comes to payment innovation, meaning creative ways to view and pay bills.

75% of HIT companies offer pay by text to prompt consumer payments by phone – up 56% in the past 12 months.

94% say they have increased overall receivables collection.

The importance of security

Every time a healthcare organization experiences a breach, there is a potential for payment card data to be stolen if the right security mechanisms are not in place.

Encryption and tokenization continue to be critical to securing healthcare payment data.

23% of consumers have been impacted by a data breach in the past two years.

83% believe healthcare providers are doing everything they can to protect their data.

Opportunities for improvement

When asked what they believe is the single greatest opportunity to make further improvements in patient financial engagement in the next five years, HIT company executives said self-service payments and patient communication.

Online portals

66% of consumers are registered on at least one provider portal.

75% of these consumers visited the portal to check balances and pay bills.

Online portals offer many advantages, including increased efficiency and security, as well as shorter receivable cycles.

88% of HIT company executives have seen an increase in patient usage of contactless payments (card and mobile phone) in the last 12 months.

©2020 U.S. Bank. All rights reserved. This document is prepared by U.S. Bank Payment Services as a service for its customers. The information discussed is general in nature and may not apply to your specific situation.

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