Turquoise Health scores $20M to power healthcare price transparency

The news: Healthcare price transparency startup Turquoise Health raised $20 million in Series A financing, which was led by venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, to launch its direct contracting platform.

How it works: Turquoise Health’s platform lets consumers compare costs of care and insurance rates to help them shop around for the most affordable healthcare services in their area.

  • Most of the data used to cross-reference prices of healthcare services across different providers and insurance rates are sourced from the Machine Readable File disclosure required by the government’s Hospital Price Transparency rule, enforced in January 2021. The rule mandates healthcare providers to disclose the rates for all their services that they negotiated with insurers.

Why it’s worth watching: Healthcare pricing has long been a black box, and a platform like Turquoise’s could be a game changer in the way consumers select and access healthcare services. This is especially relevant as the government also doubles down on healthcare price transparency.

  • 85% of US adults said they hadn’t researched the price of a hospital treatment before receiving it, per a 2021 Peterson-KFF Health System Tracker brief.
  • And 42% of consumers want to see increased transparency around expected out-of-pocket costs, per Cedar’s 2021 Healthcare Consumer study.
  • Access to transparent pricing also improves access to healthcare: 59% of patients said they avoided doctors visits during the pandemic to dodge surprise medical bills, per a 2021 OnePoll-Bend Financial survey.