This startup says it can save you thousands in medical bills
- People who are uninsured can also submit their medical bills through Remedy.
- Remedy is trying to save consumers money on their medical bills.
- The company takes a 20 percent commission from any savings it finds you on your bill – so if your bill is cut from $500 to $400, you’ll pay Remedy $20.
- Remedy users authorize the company to act as their “personal representative” and access their health information.
- Remedy has been in beta since May. Echevarria says the company’s several hundred beta participants have found significant errors in their billing.
Remedy will check all your medical bills for errors.
@mashable: Medical bills cost Americans $120 billion dollars in mistaken charges. This startup wants to get that money back.
A new startup says it could save you thousands of dollars on your medical bills — and only for a 20 percent fee.
Remedy, a startup launching around the country on Thursday, is trying to transform medical billing. In part because of the complex U.S. healthcare system, Americans pay $120 billion a year in medical billing errors and overcharges, Remedy says. The company wants to combine technology with medical billing experts to save consumers those billions of dollars.
Customers can elect to connect their insurance to Remedy’s service. After customers sign a HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) release form, Remedy will be authorized to comb through medical bills from the past year and all future bills to see where consumers are being overcharged.
Those mistakes could be anything from thousands overcharged for a surgery to the example Remedy likes to give — a man mistakenly billed for a pregnancy test. The system will check every bill from a $20 doctor’s copay to a surgery that costs thousands.
It’s hard for individuals to find these kind of mistakes on their own because medical bills are pretty opaque. The bills generally aren’t itemized and procedures are often noted in numerical codes.
“Households feel the brunt of healthcare expenses and we don’t have much visibility into what’s going on,” Remedy CEO Victor Echevarria told Mashable.
Remedy requests backup billing information from hospitals and looks at those codes, the math around insurance deductibles and how claims have been processed to find errors.
“We have an incredibly complicated system,” Echevarria said. “The doctor takes notes, which are transferred to a electronic health record, to the biller, to the insurance company and sometimes there’s another middleman. Just that flow of information looks like a twisted game of Telephone.”
The company uses a proprietary technology to search for errors and then backs that up with human experts, employed on a contract basis.
Since it isn’t providing any insurance itself, Remedy just makes sure it complies with HIPAA, the law that governs privacy of medical information. Remedy users authorize the company to act as their “personal representative” and access their health information.
Remedy has been in beta since May. Echevarria says the company’s several hundred beta participants have found significant errors in their billing.
The company takes a 20 percent commission from any savings it finds you on your bill — so if your bill is cut from $500 to $400, you’ll pay Remedy $20. That 20 percent, however, is capped at $99. So if you were overcharged by thousands, you won’t owe Remedy thousands.
That pricing scheme is an introductory offer, and Remedy might raise either the percentage fee or $99 cap down the line.
The startup’s full launch this week will make it available to customers will all types of health insurance, Echevarria said. People who are uninsured can also submit their medical bills through Remedy.
The company has raised $1.9 million in seed funding since 2015.