Does Your Plastic Surgeon Take Plastic?

August 4, 2011
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Increasingly, doctors, dentists and especially physicians who treat patients paying out-of-pocket are partnering with credit card firms that specialize in financing medical procedures.  About 140,000 health care providers now accept GE’s CareCredit card – an increase of 40% in the past three years reports the Wall Street Journal.

Increasingly, doctors, dentists and especially physicians who treat patients paying out-of-pocket are partnering with credit card firms that specialize in financing medical procedures.  About 140,000 health care providers now accept GE’s CareCredit card – an increase of 40% in the past three years reports the Wall Street Journal.

In part, the card issuers are taking advantage of gaps in health-insurance policies for procedures like dental implants, corrective eye surgery and cosmetic surgery. By 2015, patients could be forking over roughly $150 billion in out-of-pocket health-care costs, according to consulting firm McKinsey & Co., up from an estimated $45 billion in 2010.

David Williams of The Health Business Blog points out another reason physicians sign up with medical credit card companies.  It allows them a way to offer a discount (zero interest payments options) without actually having to discount their services.