Zable does what Medical Costs Finder can’t

3 minute read

The healthcare navigation platform has done the legwork to fill its online tool with information patients can use.

Healthcare navigation platform Zable Health has launched a bold challenge to the Department of Health and Aged Care’s $24 million white elephant, Medical Costs Finder.

Zable is a free tool designed to “empower more informed and supported patient referrals to private medical specialists.”

The service displays average waiting list times and fees for a majority of private medical specialists across the country, together with a tool for patients to upload medical referrals to start the booking process.

Unlike Medical Costs Finder, which relies on specialists uploading their fee schedules to the portal themselves, Zable sources the information themselves from publicly available data and via medical practices.

HSD’s sister publication, The Medical Republic revealed in April that Medical Costs Finder featured the grand total of fee schedules from 21 specialists.

According to Zable those numbers have blown out to a $24 million cost with just 20 individual specialists opting to display their fees on the site.

Medical Costs Finder does contain useful, high-level data about the average out-of-pocket costs for a consult across different specialties, as well as the bulk-billing rates of each individual specialty.

However when it comes to utility for patients, Zable looks to have MCF well beaten.

Via Zable patients and carers can find, assess and request to book a suitable private healthcare provider for their specific needs. They can filter search results by geographic proximity, telehealth capabilities, availability, fees and medical expertise – with a feature to easily upload and action medical referrals.

“At a time where patient accessibility, engagement and service transparency are more important than ever, Zable is an invaluable resource to connect patients and medical specialists, while supporting core business efficiencies around referral pathways for healthcare practices,” said Zable co-founder, Matthew Gregory.

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“While we deeply understand and endorse the expertise of healthcare professionals providing specialist recommendations, this is often an opaque process.

“Many still rely on basic online or paper-based directories; their mental ‘black book’; and word of mouth. And we know they often have restricted access to specialists’ true availability, fee structures and areas of medical specialty and training.

“This causes bottlenecks on the specialist side, and the onus falls on patients and carers to find appropriate and available specialists in moments of heightened need.

“New figures show more than a quarter of Australian patients avoid accessing specialist care when they have a referral in hand – a serious cause for concern for patients and healthcare professionals alike.”

Zable is free for Australian patients and all medical professionals (i.e. doctors, specialists). Medical specialists can opt-in to receive enhanced features for a small fee. Zable offers three tiers of engagement for healthcare partners – free, professional and enhanced, ranging from $0 to $250 per month and with a $10 processing fee for qualified patients reaching their practice.

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