By JOANNE RODRIGUES-CRAIG
Financial well-being, or the state of an individual’s personal monetary affairs, is one of the six core indicators of wellness in the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index. Poor financial well-being can lead to a whole host of short and long term mental and physical health issues, including depression, anxiety, troubled relationships and chronic stress. 
It is surprising how American hospitals and other health providers have neglected financial well-being when considering their patients’ health. In a recent study by the American Cancer Association, 56% of Americans suffer from hardships related to the cost of care. Medical costs are the primary cause of 67% of all bankruptcies in the United States. To think that health care costs are not having a deleterious effect on American’s general well-being is a complete fallacy.
Even as a former health technology data scientist, I was largely in the dark about how health provider pricing works. Finding health provider pricing is like pulling teeth; it’s extremely time0consuming, frustrating (and sometimes painful) to get a health estimate for even the simplest procedures. Having poor or inadequate insurance can feel like a weight holding you down during your most vulnerable time, in the midst of a major health crisis.Continue reading…