Purdue bringing Castlight health care shopping tool to employees in spring 2012

December 9, 2011

Purdue will introduce a robust new tool to help employees shop for health care beginning next spring.

"Many of our employees want to become smarter health care consumers to save money for themselves and for the University," says Luis Lewin, vice president for human resources. "But it can be hard to find the information you need to really shop around for care." 

Lewin cites two obstacles that often get in the way:

* Patients don't see prices until they get the bill, which could be weeks after an appointment.
* Asking around for recommendations on good health care providers can be time-consuming. 

To help employees overcome these barriers, Purdue will provide the Castlight health care shopping tool beginning in late March 2012. Castlight will allow faculty, staff and their medical plan dependents to compare doctors based on quality and price before going for care.

Available via the Web and by phone, Castlight will use Purdue's medical claims data for the cost comparisons, combined with information supplied by health plans and health care providers. In addition, the shopping tool will provide educational content to guide employee decision-making.

The online experience offered by Castlight is highly personalized with an intuitive interface similar to the most popular online comparison shopping tools, which should make it easy for employees and their dependents to learn to use the service.

 "Castlight empowers employees to compare costs and quality of health care services," Lewin says. "With this tool, they can control out-of-pocket costs while making the best health care decisions for themselves and their families."