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Meet Rebecca Plevin: She wants you to (successfully) navigate the health care system



Rebecca takes a selfie with her orthopedic surgery.
Rebecca takes a selfie with her orthopedic surgery.
Rebecca Plevin

Rebecca Plevin covers health for KPCC in a very particular way: She focuses on how the health care system works for consumers. In the past year she has been talking with patients, doctors and others who want to open up the conversation about one of the biggest worries in health care — cost. As many people remark, we consumers know the price of most things we buy, but often that doesn't apply to health care. Yet as deductibles rise on health insurance and consumer choices multiply, we need help understanding how price should factor into our own decisions.

Rebecca has been out ahead of many other reporters in exploring these issues through stories such as this recent piece on Lee Tomlinson of Westwood, whose cancer pushed him into personal bankruptcy. She's won praise and encouragement from people in the health care system, and she's plunged boldly into all kinds of topics through her Impatient blog, radio stories and weekly Take Two show segments.

For instance, there was that song... about colonoscopies that she commissioned the brave Levi Petree (KPCC employee by day, The Radio Publica band member by night) to write and perform. It's called "#JustAsk" and based on "Ask" by The Smiths. 

A song about colonoscopies.

As you can read, she's not afraid to talk to people about the high costs — and horrors — of getting a colonoscopy. It's all a part of the #PriceCheck movement, a project we launched last summer in collaboration with KQED in San Francisco and Clearhealthcosts.com. It's meant to make healthcare costs more transparent through a database of crowdsourced medical bills. (Yes, we'd love for you to upload yours!)

We thought we'd have Rebecca explain it all in her own words.

Listen to Rebecca explain her project

The latest iteration of PriceCheck comes in the form of selfies. Yes, we're asking you to take a selfie with your doctor to break the ice right before you pop the question: How much will this cost? Hey, I did it! 

#selfieswithdoctors

When Rebecca isn't taking selfies with doctors, you can probably find her at the park doing acro yoga. Don't know what that is? (Neither did I.) 

This: 

Check out the acro yoga

(Click on the play button in the photo to watch the video.)

Practicing acro yoga five days a week burns an enviable amount of calories (look at those muscles!). That's why Rebecca has no problem eating lots ice cream, which is also one of her hobbies. We'll leave you her pro tip regarding one of L.A.'s newest ice cream shops, Churro Borough.

Eat ice cream every day

Want updates on KPCC's healthcare coverage? Follow the latest on our blog, Impatient or sign-up for its newsletter here. See what Rebecca's reading via Twitter. And listen to her every Wednesday morning on Take Two.