By Patrick Creagh, Marketing Specialist

This morning Healthcare Finance News cited a new report by Kalorama Information that claims out-of-pocket spending will increase to $608 billion dollars in 2015. This number is higher than expected, and the report says that copayments are expected to grow at 9.5% annually.

Though plenty in the healthcare industry have pointed out the trend of increasing patient financial responsibility, these latest numbers show a challenge of even greater proportions. New factors like the incoming Cadillac tax are already changing the structure of healthcare payments as employers move their employees to health plans with higher deductibles.

Despite the increase in deductibles, premiums are also expected to increase by 7.1%, meaning that patients will shoulder more healthcare costs than ever in the coming years. For healthcare providers, this means more patients will question their costs, scrutinize their bills for opportunities to negotiate, and choose providers who offer patient-friendly payment options like online portals and flexible financing options.

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