is Google find ways to help users navigate coverage space with a new tool that helps people check if a provider is in the network.
Users will be able to look up a specific provider and see which insurance network they use. Google also allows Medicare members to use filters on their cell phones to find providers in their area that accept coverage.
“By providing timely and authoritative health information, along with relevant resources and tools on Google Search, we are always exploring ways to help people make more informed choices about their health. Here are some of the new ways we’re helping,” Hema Budaraju, director of Google Search, said in a blog post announcing the news.
The tech giant also created a feature that shows the language used at each vendor’s office.
On the carrier side, doctors and healthcare providers can claim their business profile to update their services and hours.
WHY IT IMPORTANT
Finding a provider that accepts their insurance and can see them in time can be difficult for patients. In fact, According to Urban Institute, 13.5% of individuals with employer-sponsored insurance and 22.9% of individuals with Medicaid or public insurance have had difficulty finding a provider within the past 12 months.
People with chronic conditions and incomes below 138% of the federal poverty rate are more likely to have trouble finding a provider.
TREND TO BIGGER WOMAN
This is one of a number of new health-related features that Google has rolled out over the last year. In October, it unveiled a new mobile version of Google Care Studio, a search engine for clinicians that helps organize patient medical records.
This isn’t Google’s first attempt at helping patients find a provider. In September, Google launches new tools on Search and Maps show more information in the healthcare provider’s business profile.