Prepaid Tests: A Great Option for Lower-Cost Tests
Individuals without health insurance, or who are simply looking to control costs, have options other than traditional labs. One of the best options is prepaid blood tests, such as those offered by Personal Labs, a division of LabCorp (personalabs.com).
To use PersonalLabs, a patient creates an account, searches for the correct test(s) on an easy-to-use website, pays with Paypal or a credit card, then prints a receipt. The patient then goes a LabCorp lab, presents the receipt (along with a photo ID) and is emailed the results. The patient can then share the results with his or her physician.
Prepaid tests are a great option for patient and provider alike. The patient knows what he or she will be charged before placing an order, the lab doesn't have to worry about an angry or strapped patient refusing to pay, and the prices are much lower than those charged by traditional labs. For example, a dilantin level test (used to evaluate a commonly-prescribed anti-epilepsy medication) is $102 at Poudre Valley Hospital's lab (located in Fort Collins, Colorado) (Poudre, 2010). The very same test is $50.00 via PersonalLabs.