Despite a 2016 promise of the the former Dutch Health Care minister prices of hospital treatments are still not transparant. This is the reason that the Dutch Consumer Organization and Open State Foundation gathered the prices of more than a million hospital treatments. With the new Zorgkostenvergelijker users can find the cheapest hospital for a specific treatment on the map. With this tool the organizations want to provide valuable information to help users of health care find the best and cheapest hospital and health care insurance company.
Medical treatments below the threshold of the deductible price (385 euros or a maximum of 885 euros) have to be paid by the person undergoing treatment. The government expects consumers to weigh the price when choosing a health insurance company, health care provider or treatment. The tariffs of treatments are not made public by most insurance companies and health care providers. Due to this lack of transparency consumers are not able to take the price of health care into consideration.
Health care tariffs now available on a map
The Dutch Consumer Organization and Open State Foundation developed the Zorgkostentool for this reason. With this tool users can share the tariff of a treatment, the hospital, the code of the treatment and the name of the insurance company. No personal data is shared in the process.
With the new version of the Zorgkostenvergelijker the tariffs can be viewed on a map visualization. The Zorgkostenvergelijker uses information that we receive or gather from insurance companies VGZ, CZ and Menzis or from hospitals. This information is enriched with information that users provide through the Zorgkostentool.
Open State will continue to crowdsource the tariffs
Open State Foundation started a lawsuit against the Dutch Health Authority (NZaa) to gather insight in all hospital tariffs. Former minister Schippers ordered the NZa to make a plan to gradually release all health care tariffs. The current minister Bruins now agrees with health care insurance companies publishing the tariffs on their own website behind a login-screen. With this step health care tariffs will not be comparable and transparant as was promised in 2016.
On this moment not a single health care insurance company released all tariffs. When insurance companies publish the tariffs on the closed environments of their website, the tariffs are still not publicly available. The Dutch Consumer Organization and Open State Foundation call on insurance companies to publish all of their tariffs as oepn data. Until these datasets are available Open State Foundation will continue to share tariffs via the Zorgkostenvergelijker.