Thrive by IU Health

February 26, 2021

IU Health introduces online price estimate tool

IU Health introduces online price estimate tool

Before you schedule medical care, your out-of-pocket costs may be top of mind. Can I afford this? What price am I expected to pay? Not knowing what you owe until a bill arrives in the mail is less than ideal.

In its ongoing efforts to help patients understand their expected out-of-pocket costs with meaningful and helpful information, IU Health is putting tools directly in the patients’ hands.

IU Health recently introduced its Self-Service Price Estimate Tool, an online tool that provides real-time estimates for approximately 800 common medical services. Plug in your insurance information – or leave it off if you do not have insurance – and you can get an immediate out-of-pocket price estimate.

“Patients now have access to an estimate 24/7 when it’s convenient for them,” said Terri Etnier, Patient Financial Navigation executive director at IU Health. “Our patients are aware of and can plan for their out-of-pocket expense.”

This is the latest step IU Health has taken to provide price transparency for patients. In 2015, IU Health began providing price estimates upon request. Later, they added an online request form where patients could provide information to the IU Health price estimates team who would provide a tailored estimate.

In 2020, IU Health provided price estimates for more than 90,000 services to empower patients to make informed decisions regarding their care. But the new tool now puts estimates at the patient’s fingertips, allowing them to find the information they need when they need it, 24/7.

How many services are available in the Self-Service Price Estimate tool?

There are approximately 800 services available for estimates in the self-service tool. They are considered highly shoppable services – meaning procedures patients frequently seek information about in order to make a decision about where to receive care. They include labs, radiology and some outpatient procedures and surgeries.

If the care you are planning is more complex, or not one of the commonly provided services available in our Self-Service Price Estimate tool, the IU Health Price Estimates team is ready to create an estimate uniquely tailored to your specific circumstances.

You can receive an individualized price estimate for non-shoppable services through the My IU Health Patient Portal.

Individualized price estimates are also available by contacting the Price Estimates team by phone or email: Call 317.963.2541 or toll-free 833.722.6050. Email: estimates@iuhealth.org.

How does the Self-Service price estimate tool work?

Here’s how the self-service tool works:

  • For insured patients. Your real-time insurance benefits are applied to expected costs to determine the amount you are responsible for paying after insurance.
  • For uninsured patients. Your out-of-pocket costs are based on a discount for the amount generally billed for hospital services. Discounts are also given for IU Health employed physicians’ professional services.

The estimate presents a full picture view of out-of-pocket costs by including related services. This could be facility fees, services by IU Health employed physicians, labs, radiology services, or drugs commonly provided with the selected service. This ensures the patient is fully informed of all out-of-pocket costs. For example, a patient will know the cost of both a hospital MRI or X-ray and the cost of services performed by the physician reading that MRI or X-ray.

To get started, access the Self-Service Price Estimate Tool. It is available in the My IU Health patient portal and can be found on the IU Health website at iuhealth.org/schedule-appointment/price-estimates.

You will choose the location where you plan to receive the service, and then enter your insurance information or choose the self-pay option. Once you have entered the information, you will choose from a list of services at that location for an estimate.

Visit the Price Estimates page to learn more or get started with the Self-Service Price Estimate tool.