Web Site: http://WeCareBill.hk
WeCareBill is an open database for patients to select medical services based on budget. It reduces patients’ fear to go private due to cost uncertainty: this simple step would reroute 3-5% public patients to go private, leaving more resources for needy and urgent patients.
It is basic patients’ right to know the cost in advance before they select medical services. However, due to the Code of Conduct imposed by the Medical Council, doctors are not allowed to publish the price of surgeries, causing surgery costs to vary in multiples for some extreme cases. Therefore, most Hong Kong patients have to pay for consultations in order to obtain a price estimate - unlike other countries with unified pricing or clear price lists.
Hence, a significant proportion of the price-sensitive, uninsured elderly population opts not to use private services, even though they can afford to do so. This poses burdens on our public health system, leading to the waiting time for public hospital to become longer, and directly affect our health. These unfortunate results also echo the report findings from Bupa in 2018: data transparency is a key to enhance the sustainability of the Hong Kong healthcare system.
The three social impacts we bring are:
- Better health outcomes: by enabling patients to make more informed and faster decisions based on price information
- Shorter waiting times for public hospitals: more public resources for the needy
Higher savings on expenditure: from better utilization of private hospitals and health insurance in Hong Kong.
HSIEH Chia Yen (CUHK)
BAI Yuin Ru (CUHK)
LEUNG Hei Tung (CUHK)
YEH Ting Hsuan (HKUST)
Prof. HUNG Chi Tim (CUHK)
Mr. OOI Tyan Chyi Nicholas (LU)