FAIR Health Consumer Website Records Notable Traffic to Shared Decision-Making Resources in 2022

January 19, 2023

In 2022, consumers demonstrated strong interest in the shared decision-making tools and related educational content recently incorporated into FAIR Health’s free, award-winning consumer website, fairhealthconsumer.org. FAIR Health also saw an increase in the proportion of male users of its site; of the hundreds of thousands of insured and uninsured patients who visited the site to estimate and plan for their healthcare expenditures, 45 percent were male—up 4 percentage points from 2021. Other insights into consumer website user demographics and search habits can be found in FAIR Health’s infographic of year-end statistics for 2022.

For the 11th consecutive year, FAIR Health and its consumer website won several eHealthcare Leadership Awards for being reliable sources of healthcare information. In 2022, FAIR Health received seven awards, including the Mark Gothberg eHealthcare Organizational Commitment Award, the highest honor awarded, which recognizes industry leadership, innovation and commitment, according to the presenter of the awards, Plain-English Health Care.

Top Medical and Dental Search Terms
FAIR Health Consumer’s cost lookup tools allow users to estimate costs for medical and dental care by procedure and geographic location.

In 2022, the top five medical terms searched with the medical cost lookup tool were:

  1. Emergency room;
  2. Ultrasound;
  3. MRI;
  4. Anesthesia; and
  5. Birth.

“Birth” did not appear among the top five medical terms in 2021; it replaced “speech” as the fifth most common term searched in 2021. Otherwise, the list did not change.

In 2022, the top five dental terms searched with the medical cost lookup tool were:

  1. Implant;
  2. Orthodontic;
  3. Root canal;
  4. Extraction; and
  5. Crown.

The top five dental terms were the same in 2021. “Implant” topped the list both years.

Age and Gender
Among the broad spectrum of adults who visited FAIR Health Consumer in 2022, the age group of 25-34-year-olds made up the largest share of website users—its second year in a row as the largest age group. The age breakdown of FAIR Health Consumer users in 2022 was:

  • 18-24: 16.78 percent;
  • 25-34: 23.57 percent;
  • 35-44: 22.31 percent;
  • 45-54: 16.68 percent;
  • 55-64: 12.13 percent; and
  • 65+: 8.53 percent.

In 2022, 55 percent of FAIR Health Consumer users were female, 45 percent male. Though women continue to outnumber men among FAIR Health Consumer users, the percentage who were male grew since 2021, when 41 percent of users were male.

Top User Locations
The top 10 states from which visits to FAIR Health Consumer originated in 2022 were:

  1. New York;
  2. California;
  3. Texas;
  4. Virginia;
  5. Florida;
  6. Illinois;
  7. Georgia;
  8. New Jersey;
  9. Pennsylvania; and
  10. North Carolina.

The top 10 states in 2021 were the same, though in a different order. In 2022, New York replaced California as the top consumer website user location. Virginia climbed up the list from eighth to fourth place, replacing Florida, which moved down to fifth place. In addition, Georgia moved from just below New Jersey to just above.

Most Popular Educational Topics
FAIR Health Consumer features a rich array of FH® Insurance Basics, which are original articles and videos that explain complex healthcare topics in easy-to-understand language. The most popular topics from this library in 2022 were:

  • Negotiating your costs;
  • Shared decision making;
  • Types of out-of-network reimbursement;
  • Healthcare services not covered by health insurance; and
  • How to review your medical bill.

The most popular educational topics in 2022 differed from 2021. “Negotiating your costs” jumped from fifth to first in the list, and “shared decision making” appeared in the ranking for the first time, as the second most popular topic.

Top Decision Aids
Thanks to generous grant funding, FAIR Health Consumer saw the addition of several shared decision-making tools in 2022. Shared decision making—the discussion among patients, their caregivers and clinicians to decide on treatment based on clinical options and patient preferences and values—is facilitated by decision aids, which present treatment options for specific clinical conditions or scenarios. The groundbreaking decision aids on FAIR Health Consumer integrate cost estimates with the clinical information. In 2022, the top decision aids on FAIR Health Consumer were:

  1. Type 2 diabetes;
  2. Nutrition options for people who are seriously ill;
  3. Slow-growing prostate cancer;
  4. Kidney dialysis; and
  5. Uterine fibroids.

Most Frequently Visited Total Treatment Cost Bundles
FAIR Health Consumer’s medical cost lookup tool provides access to FH® Total Treatment Cost bundles. With these, users can view the typical costs for all components of care for certain chronic and acute conditions and event-based procedures. The most frequently visited bundles in 2022 were:

  • Knee replacement;
  • Hysterectomy;
  • Rheumatoid arthritis;
  • Knee arthroscopy; and
  • C-section.

Of these, only “rheumatoid arthritis” and “C-section” were on the top five list in 2021. “COVID-19 noncomplex inpatient,” “vaginal delivery” and “COVID-19 complex inpatient” were on the list in 2021, but fell off it in 2022.

For the infographic, click here.