Jeanne Pinder, founder and CEO
Jeanne Pinder worked for The New York Times for 23 years before founding ClearHealthCosts. At The Times, she was an editor, reporter and human resources executive before volunteering for a buyout in late 2009. Before The Times, she worked at The Des Moines (Ia.) Register, The Grinnell (Ia.) Herald-Register and The Associated Press. She majored in Russian and did graduate work in Slavic studies, spending almost two years in the former Soviet Union, a place almost as opaque as the health-care marketplace.
She created ClearHealthCosts with funding from a group of angels, and with three grants: one from the Tow-Knight Center for Entrepreneurial Journalism at the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism; one from the Ford Foundation via the International Women’s Media Foundation, in the Women Entrepreneurs in the Digital News Frontier program; and one from the McCormick Foundation’s New Media Women Entrepreneurs Program via J-Lab: The Institute for Interactive Journalism.
In 2015, Pinder was chosen as a co-researcher on a study of crowdsourcing for journalists at the Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia University in New York, funded by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Her 2019 TED talk has almost 2 million views.
Alex Filatov, tech lead
An accomplished full-stack developer, Alex is the creator of ShopyBot, the chatbot platform for e-commerce and Million Dollar Page for NHS, a website created with a goal to raise £1M in donations for the NHS (Britain’s National Health Service). An experienced software engineer, he excels in web development, high load architecture and user experience.
Tina Kelley, business development
Tina Kelley is a veteran journalist and a strategist with ClearHealthCosts.com. A senior reporter at NJ.com/The Star-Ledger, she is the co-author of Breaking Barriers: How P-TECH Schools Create a Pathway from High School to College to Career and Almost Home: Helping Kids Move from Homelessness to Hope. She shared in a staff Pulitzer covering 9/11 at The New York Times, where she was a metro reporter for ten years. A graduate of Yale University, she has experience telling compelling stories and writing about solutions to thorny problems in education, social policy, and other fields. Her work has appeared in New Jersey Monthly, TheAtlantic.com, Orion, Audubon, and People magazines, and The Best American Poetry 2009.
Virginia Jeffries, Reporter
Virginia Jeffries is a journalist in New York City. Since 2020, she has reported on long Covid, medical billing and the U.S. vaccine rollout for ClearHealthCosts. She earned a master’s in journalism from the City University of New York in 2019 and has previously worked for the Forward and Coconuts Singapore. Find more of her work in Foreign Policy, City Limits and The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Before becoming a reporter, she worked in education.
Molly Taft, reporter
Molly Taft is a journalist based in New York. Her reporting has appeared in VICE, The Intercept, The Outline, Teen Vogue, Fast Company, and more. She graduated in May with a master’s in journalism from Columbia University.
Ben Glickman, reporter
Ben Glickman is a freelance journalist and student based in New York. With ClearHealthCosts, he covers all things Covid-related. He is currently a sophomore at Brown University and a senior staff writer in the Metro section at The Brown Daily Herald, where he covers neighborhoods in Providence.
Phoebe Pinder, reporter
Phoebe Pinder is a reporter based in New York. She graduated from Grinnell College in 2016. Her interests include healthcare, the environment, gaming and international travel.
Rebecca Sesny, reporter
Rebecca Sesny is a multimedia journalist and documentary filmmaker based in New York City. She has international reporting experience working in East Africa and the Congo covering women’s rights, health care, and the environment. She recently completed work on a documentary for National Geographic about the global water crisis. Her independent short documentary about the presidential elections in the Democratic Republic of the Congo was selected to screen at the CongoInHarlem.org film festival. She also freelances producing, shooting and editing for news organizations including The New York Times, The Guardian and Discovery Networks. She has an M.A. in international reporting from the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism.
Indrani Datta, reporter
Indrani Datta is a health journalist with a software background. She has helped build news interactives and covered cancer drugs, hospital finance, and politics. She also founded a news startup that built a smart news reader.
Debbie Martin, reporter-RESEARCHER
Debbie Martin is an accomplished researcher focusing on medical and health care issues. She is the author of “An Annotated Guide to Adoption Research.” She created the first ever online database of adoption research.
Elisia Guerena, reporter
Elisia Guerena is a Brooklyn-based freelance journalist. Her work has appeared in Popular Science, The Chicago Tribune, and The Week Magazine, among others. She writes about science, technology, and innovative thinkers who shape the world with their vision. Follow her on Twitter.
Avery Miles, reporter
Avery Miles is a multimedia journalist who has covered local news in New York City and Austin, Texas. Before working in public radio, she assisted on major films and television shows, and edited feature-length documentaries. She has produced long-form stories about the NYC taxi industry, video game streamers and environmental issues. She is currently producing podcasts at Fast Company and Inc.
Tamsen Maloy, Reporter
Tamsen Maloy is a journalist and filmmaker from Utah. She has a master’s in journalism from the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism and focuses on health, science, religion and women’s issues in her reporting.
Eliana Pérez, reporter
Eliana Pérez has reported for NBC Chicago and the financial publication American Banker. Currently, she forms part of Bloomberg LP’s production team, in the network’s world headquarters in New York City. She holds a master’s in both Spanish-language and business journalism from CUNY’s Newmark Graduate School of Journalism.
Laura M. Olivieri Robles, reporter
Laura Olivieri Robles is an independent journalist from Puerto Rico. She is an alumna of CUNY’s Newmark Graduate School of Journalism and is currently based in Atlanta. Her work has appeared in Cannabis Wire, Public International Radio and the New York Times.
Our work with PriceCheck, our health cost transparency partnerships with media and other organizations, has stretched across the nation, bringing thousands of people to our partner web sites to share and search prices — from databases, from our reporting, and from our communities.
We build interactive software and place it on our partners’ sites, using pricing information from three sources. First, we pre-populate the database with our survey of cash or self-pay pricing collected from local providers on common, shoppable procedures — or, sometimes, prices of bigger-ticket items. Second, we encourage community members to come and share their pricing information, from their bills or “explanation of benefits” forms from an insurer. Third, we also display the Medicare reimbursement rate for a collection of 8,400 procedures catalogued in the Healthcare Common Procedural Coding System (HCPCS) used by the government in different geographic regions.
In this way, we display a 360-degree view of pricing. We don’t have every price for every procedure at every provider across the nation — that data does not exist anywhere — but we have a “community-created guide to health costs” that informs people and gives them a sense of agency in the bewildering world of health care pricing. People can share and search the data, and we use the data to write and tell about the costs of health care. Here’s a post about the partnerships.
Our partnership with CBS News began in 2019. Running under the heading “Medical Price Roulette,” this series has won praise from our communities and elicited an enormous response from viewers. It also won the 2019 gold award for the best public service journalism for network news from the Society for Professional Journalists — Sigma Delta Chi.
Our partnership with WNYC Public radio in New York and its sister site, the hyperlocal digital Gothamist.com, began in 2019. The partnership is funded by a grant from the New York State Health Foundation.
Our partnership with The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Daily News, philly.com and 6ABC Action News took place in 2018, funded by a grant from the Lenfest Institute. Hundreds of people shared prices and searched our database, and our partners did several dozen news stories based on our reporting.
Our partnership with WVUE FOX 8 Live and NOLA.com I The Times-Picayune in New Orleans has brought thousands of people to share and search our database. The news coverage has changed the conversation about health costs in the city. Hundreds and hundreds of people have shared their prices and their stories, and people in the health care industry are reaching out to us by the dozens to contribute to the conversation. Here’s a look at the partnership.
Our PriceCheck prototype partnership, in 2013, placed our interactive widget on the web sites of KQED public radio in San Francisco and KPCC/Southern California public radio in Los Angeles, funded by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. (When we won that grant with our partners, it was called “Uncovering Cost, Examining Impact.”)
Here’s some of the reporting by us and about us in the California prototype, on a group Tumblr. Don’t miss the pieces in the Harvard Business Review, the JAMA Internal Medicine piece and the positive editor’s note, and the other coverage by the three of us partners, and about us.
We also partnered with WHYY public radio in Philadelphia, joining hands with WHYY journalists to crowdsource and report on health care prices in the Delaware Valley. Here’s the project page for the WHYY partnership.
We are also partnering with MedPage Today, which provides news, information and continuing medical education to 670,000 medical professionals.
Our angel investors
Our grant organizations
The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
The Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia University
The New York State Health Foundation
The Lenfest Institute
The International Women’s Media Foundation and the Ford Foundation — Liza Gross, Nadine Hoffman, Elisa Munoz and others
The Tow-Knight Center for Entrepreneurial Journalism at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism — Jeff Jarvis, Jeremy Caplan and others
J-Lab, a journalism catalyst at the School of Communication at American University, and the McCormick Foundation — Jan Schaffer, Jill Clarke and others
All the jury and selection committee members who voted for us in these grant processes.
CUNY Graduate School of Journalism
Steve Shepard, Sarah Bartlett, Jeff Jarvis, Jeremy Caplan, Judy Watson, Amy Dunkin et al.
The CUNY J-School Entrepreneurials of 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013, and the incubator crew — especially Jenni Avins, Drani Datta and Alan Grow.
Hunter Farrell, Farrell Counsel
Bill Richter, Richter Law Offices
Joe Richotte, Jennifer Dukarski et al, Butzel Long
Neil Jacobs, Neil Jacobs Law
The Online Media Legal Network at Harvard’s Berkman Center — Jeff Hermes, Andy Sellars et al
Early tech partners
Other tech partners and colleagues at Revsquare and Allied Strategy: Jeff Mignon, Guillaume Pousseo, Elisa Riteau, Chris Lojniewski, Nancy Wang and Damian White from Revsquare, and also John Skinner, Cameron Colby Thomson, Jeff Runyan and Grant Horejsi from Allied Strategy.
- Investigative Reporters and Editors
- The Association of Health Care Journalists
- The Online News Association
- Civic Hall
- The Society for Participatory Medicine
- Health Rosetta
- Health 2.0
- The Li.st (XX in Tech)
- The Techlady Mafia
- HealthFoo (Friends of O’Reilly)
- TedMed Great Challenges