By Barbara Ficarra, RN, BSN, MPA
Microsoft’s Dr. Bill Crounse Talks with Todd Park, CTO of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, on Health Tech Today
There is a plethora of health information for consumers today. We are surrounded by smart meaningful material, but somehow it is easy to get lost in the maze of information. We get stuck navigating through it and we find it hard to obtain information that is right for us.
Even the most savvy health consumer may find it difficult to find information out about health care reform, insurance plans and The Affordable Care Act; but Dr. Bill Crounse, host of Health Tech Today talks with Todd Park, CTO of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services about a government website that makes it simple to find information on prevention, consumer rights, health insurance plans, and tools to assess the quality of care you are getting.
Dr. Crounse calls Todd Park, the Tech Guru behind the government website, charged with improving the nation’s health through the innovative use of technology and data.
Here’s a peek at the interview. To watch the full interview, click on the YouTube button above.
Crounse: What inspired this site? (Healthcare.gov)
Park: “The public is incredibly confused about the health insurance market place. It’s a really complex byzantine place in which to try to find coverage options that might be right for you.” He adds, they compiled an inventory of all known private insurance plans and public coverage options like Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program, etc. and put them for the first time in a single website.
Secondly, consumers can gain access in a personal way. “We built something called the insurance option finder where you answer a just a few simple questions and boom you get a list of private and public insurance options that are customized for you,” says Park in the interview.
Crounse: What are you hearing from consumers, payers and providers?
Park: Visitors want pricing information about private insurance plans. So on October 1st they debuted pricing info for private insurance plans for individuals and families.
Crounse: President Obama has made technology such an important part of his national agenda, have you heard anything from the President?
Park: “Well, he’s delighted with the website. He called Secretary Sebelius the day it went live, July 1st and said, “Wow the website’s really cool.”
We would love to hear from you. Do you find it difficult navigating through sites for health information, especially health insurance information? What do you think of this new government website? Did you find the information you were looking for? Do you think it’s really cool? Thanks for sharing your insights with us.