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Brian Miller

Cost Differences Between US Hospitals Revealed!

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Same medical procedure, different price...

hospital-procedure-costs-map-2.png

A new database has revealed the insane cost differences from one hospital to the next even when the procedure may be exactly the same. The Federal Database of National Healthcare costs was made public today, revealing exactly how much you?re being charged (or over-charged) for healthcare.

More often than not, patients who don?t have health insurance will end up paying much more than they have to when there were less expensive options nearby. For example, in the city of Los Angeles, if you went into heart failure and ended up at Pacific Alliance Medical Center, you?d shell out $37, 532 dollars if you didn?t have insurance. If you were in the city of Riverside, just two hours away, the same procedure would cost $14, 458.

The insane differences not only punish those who are insured but are particularly brutal on the 49 million uninsured Americans. The prices shape what everyone pays for healthcare and how much private insurers would surrender in reimbursement for the services rendered. That in turn influences the premiums those companies charge their customers.

The Obama Administration offered up the data in hopes that its release would force hospitals to take greater heed of competitors in their area while arming patients with the information they need to seek a better deal.

The data could also give insurance companies the leverage they need to broker deals with hospitals.

Jonathan Blum, Director of the Center for Medicare stated:

?Our purpose for posting this information is to shine a much stronger light on these practices. What drives some hospitals to have significantly higher charges than their geographic peers? I don?t think anyone here has come up with a good economic argument. The very fact that prices are now public may bring change. Hopefully, it will cause hospitals themselves to take a hard look at their charge-master practices and to ask hard questions of themselves as an industry why there is so much variation.?

Public access to this data on pricing pulls back the curtain on one of the most troublesome characteristics of the American health care system: arbitrary pricing. There almost no listed base price for a procedure or why it?s priced the way it is.

More + Interactive Map: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/05/08/hospital-prices-cost-differences_n_3232678.html

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Get insurance - that's the whole ****ing point. So many friends of mine don't have any health insurance whatsoever and I just think it's so bloody stupid. Hospitals can't afford to deal with walkins in the emergency room all the time.

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Get insurance - that's the whole ****ing point. So many friends of mine don't have any health insurance whatsoever and I just think it's so bloody stupid. Hospitals can't afford to deal with walkins in the emergency room all the time.

Or actually start deducting health insurance from peoples salary like normal countries do?

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Or actually start deducting health insurance from peoples salary like normal countries do?

How does that make any bit of sense? What use is health insurance if you have your wages garnished to pay for it and now don't have money left to pay for health care? There are millions of Americans paying for insurance now and because of it, can't afford health care. The ugly truth that nobody expected. Everyone remembers the promise of Obamacare right? We all voted for it. We all bought into it. Make insurance cheaper and accessible by making health care pay for it. But who is going to pay for the increased cost of healthcare then? If you couldn't afford to pay $100 a month on insurance before, you won't be able to afford to pay for the $250 co pays after. That is assuming you have good health insurance that only makes you pay 10% of a normally $2500 bill. That's ignoring that what originally cost $2500, now costs $3000 because it is being taxed to pay for your insurance.

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Get insurance - that's the whole ****ing point. So many friends of mine don't have any health insurance whatsoever and I just think it's so bloody stupid. Hospitals can't afford to deal with walkins in the emergency room all the time.

Yeah because insurance is cheap and easy for everyone to afford if their employer doesn't provide it or it's so crappy that it's worthless (like my wife's)

Or actually start deducting health insurance from peoples salary like normal countries do?

My wife's company does this as well. So not only do we lose out on a portion of her salary but the coverage is horrible. So we end up having to pay $250 a month for insurance that's actually helpful (as in, provides prescription drug coverage)

I think the best solution is to make medical care not so ****ing expensive. An ER visit where they just give you some pain killers shouldn't cost $7000.

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How does that make any bit of sense? What use is health insurance if you have your wages garnished to pay for it and now don't have money left to pay for health care? There are millions of Americans paying for insurance now and because of it, can't afford health care.

Seems to work out alright elsewhere. Lower costs, better life expectancy, lower infant mortality, more people covered etc etc

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When it costs literally tens of thousands of dollars just to stay at a hospital for a day or two, you know the system is broken. Healthcare in the US is pathetic, and the insurance industry is a scam that's in bed with the government. Universal healthcare is the way to go, but we'll never get there.

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Here is why:

Not surprisingly, those who were uninsured or had inadequate health insurance were most likely to have trouble affording care. But 28% of working-age adults with good insurance also had to forgo treatment because of the price.

(emphasis added)

http://www.neowin.net/forum/topic/1149326-millions-cant-afford-to-go-to-the-doctor/

It's so sad but I too almost fall into the have insurance but can't afford the doctor category sometimes. I have Insurance taken from my paycheck to the tune of few hundred per month.

My bad luck had me going to a few doctors every 2 weeks and with co-pays (specialists) being like $30-45 each I had to cancel some appointments after I spent like $400 in 2 months! $400 may not be much to some of you but that's a lot of money to some people! :no:

My GF likes to bash insurance in the USA and she is right to a certain degree, it does suck.... but i'm much happier not paying the 19.x% in tax they pay PLUS having to pay for insurance on her own (required by law in Germany).

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Seems to work out alright elsewhere. Lower costs, better life expectancy, lower infant mortality, more people covered etc etc

We aren't talking about everywhere else so why bring it up? Hell, its not even a good comparison because it doesn't work out everywhere else. Show me another country where health insurance costs are subsidized by health care? There isn't a single country in the world where that happens.

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I guess my wife and I are just very lucky. Our monthly health insurance costs $320. Our annual deductible is $250. Co-pays are $30. Inpatient care is covered 100%. No deductible if I have to go to an emergency room and I'm admitted, and then I have 100% coverage. Drug copays are $10 - $25 - $37.50, depending on the drug (generics the cheapest of course) and that's for a 90 day supply. Free eye exams and eye glasses cost $50 or less depending on the frames and lenses. Dental coverage has an annual deductible of $75 and no copay on cleaning, fillings, x-rays, etc.

Works out just fine for my wife and I. Other members of our families have good health care coverage also. The quality of care is excellent where I live.

I realize our experience may not be the norm for everyone, but many Americans enjoy very good healthcare. It would be great to have a standardized, single-payer system and hopefully the US will get it's act together so no one is without healthcare.

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Look up the word "chargemaster". Basically, it's a Hospital machine that spit out inflated price for no reason at all.

That's how the system works. Hospitals try to get the most amount of money from the insurance companies, the insurance companies try to pay out the least. Eventually they'll settle on a price. So it's not unusual to see hospitals initially charging insurance $9000 dollars an hour for a doctor or something ridiculous like that.

If you don't have insurance you lack this bargaining power and end up paying a lot more.

I guess my wife and I are just very lucky. Our monthly health insurance costs $320. Our annual deductible is $250. Co-pays are $30. Inpatient care is covered 100%. No deductible if I have to go to an emergency room and I'm admitted, and then I have 100% coverage. Drug copays are $10 - $25 - $37.50, depending on the drug (generics the cheapest of course) and that's for a 90 day supply. Free eye exams and eye glasses cost $50 or less depending on the frames and lenses. Dental coverage has an annual deductible of $75 and no copay on cleaning, fillings, x-rays, etc.

I wish it was that cheap for us.

My health insurance: $110 a month, $1500 deductible, no dental, no eye care, 80/20 co-pay. Even though I haven't even used it once since I turned 18, my rates are going to go up to $170 a month when I turn 25.

My wife's health insurance: $375 a month, $500 deductible, no dental, no eye care, 80/20 co-pay. The reason her's is a lot higher is because she has a medical condition since birth and isn't eligible for normal insurance so she has to pay out the ass for something she barely barely ever uses too (pretty much just for the annual preventative care ****).

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I guess my wife and I are just very lucky. Our monthly health insurance costs $320. Our annual deductible is $250. Co-pays are $30. Inpatient care is covered 100%. No deductible if I have to go to an emergency room and I'm admitted, and then I have 100% coverage. Drug copays are $10 - $25 - $37.50, depending on the drug (generics the cheapest of course) and that's for a 90 day supply. Free eye exams and eye glasses cost $50 or less depending on the frames and lenses. Dental coverage has an annual deductible of $75 and no copay on cleaning, fillings, x-rays, etc.

You are incredibly lucky. Who is your provider?

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Mine is even better than Raze as I have no annual deductible but man those co-pays are highway robbery IMO. LOL. I get same for emergency room stuff and drug co-pays but all the other stuff is just "no lube" treatment!

That's how the system works. Hospitals try to get the most amount of money from the insurance companies, the insurance companies try to pay out the least. Eventually they'll settle on a price. So it's not unusual to see hospitals initially charging insurance $9000 dollars an hour for a doctor or something ridiculous like that.

If you don't have insurance you lack this bargaining power and end up paying a lot more.

Funny you mentioned that, my doctor at my last physical told me they submit a bill to the insurance company and the insurance companies says, "Here's what we are gonna pay" and sends payment. They can bitch if they wanna but touch isht! LOL.

I was like wow, that sux!

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I pay about $380 per month for my health insurance through BCBS. $15 copay for visits, $1000 deductible, RX Copay $15/30/45. This though covers all medical and dental for me. It's not bad, but it sure is pricey.

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I pay just under $4 for the wife and I, but only because I'd like the upgrade to a private room if anything were to happen. Go Canada!

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Basically, yes, it's the insurance companies. People complain about paying taxes for health insurance, apparently missing the fact that everyone already pays taxes for other people's health insurance (it's two lines on every paycheck, I'm not sure how they miss it).

Some states are contemplating single payer, but it's going to be a long process. The best thing you can do? Don't get sick.

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Yeah because insurance is cheap and easy for everyone to afford if their employer doesn't provide it or it's so crappy that it's worthless (like my wife's)

You understand that insurance only works if everyone is contributing, right? Right now everyone paying for insurance is paying more because they still have to cover the uninsured because they still get sick and need medical care.

What you'd expect to happen is that instead of say 10% of the population paying $1000 each to cover the full medical bill, 100% of people could pay $100 each to cover the nation's full medical bill.

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Some doctors are better than others too, they are specialized. But that does seem too big of a difference. Hospitals are there to make money otherwise the fail and close.

It sucks.

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I barely get sick (except for my stint earlier this year as I mentioned) but hell if i'm paying all that money per year for insurance without going to the doctor, they already freaking getting me on home and car insurance! :p I've never filled a claim on any of those those last 2 and when I add up all the money I spent this whole time it just ****es me off! :angry:

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I barely get sick (except for my stint earlier this year as I mentioned) but hell if i'm paying all that money per year for insurance without going to the doctor, they already freaking getting me on home and car insurance! :p I've never filled a claim on any of those those last 2 and when I add up all the money I spent this whole time it just ****es me off! :angry:

Lol yeah that last bit always gets me too =(

I mean we probably spend just under 10k a year for health, home, dental, and auto insurance and apart from preventative care we haven't had a single claim on them for quite a while now.

My favorite comparison, though, is this:

I am a pilot and I have renters insurance (basically for when I rent planes), it costs me $110 a year and covers the following:

$5000 deductible (I can pay more a year to remove that completely), $250,000 worth of damages to property, $250,000 worth of damages to other planes, $50,000 healthcare for me and any passengers on board the plane (each).

If I want to insure my phone it costs me about the same amount of money ($10 a month).

Car insurance costs me a lot more and covers a lot less.

I know why they're different but its just funny.

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You are incredibly lucky. Who is your provider?

Our plan is called Midlands Choice Premier. It's from my wife's employer, Wisconsin Physician Services.

Mine is even better than Raze as I have no annual deductible but man those co-pays are highway robbery IMO. LOL. I get same for emergency room stuff and drug co-pays but all the other stuff is just "no lube" treatment!

Funny you mentioned that, my doctor at my last physical told me they submit a bill to the insurance company and the insurance companies says, "Here's what we are gonna pay" and sends payment. They can bitch if they wanna but touch isht! LOL.

I was like wow, that sux!

Hospitals, clinics, etc., accept various plans provided by employers to their employees or insurance purchased by individuals. The services provided and the costs have already been negotiated between the health care providers and the insurers. Sometimes it is just a percentile discount and on other plans actual costs have been negotiated or both.

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When it costs literally tens of thousands of dollars just to stay at a hospital for a day or two, you know the system is broken. Healthcare in the US is pathetic, and the insurance industry is a scam that's in bed with the government.

Amen and amen. It's just plain ridiculous what a hospital stay costs.Someone is just being plain greedy.

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How does that make any bit of sense? What use is health insurance if you have your wages garnished to pay for it and now don't have money left to pay for health care? There are millions of Americans paying for insurance now and because of it, can't afford health care. The ugly truth that nobody expected. Everyone remembers the promise of Obamacare right? We all voted for it. We all bought into it. Make insurance cheaper and accessible by making health care pay for it. But who is going to pay for the increased cost of healthcare then? If you couldn't afford to pay $100 a month on insurance before, you won't be able to afford to pay for the $250 co pays after. That is assuming you have good health insurance that only makes you pay 10% of a normally $2500 bill. That's ignoring that what originally cost $2500, now costs $3000 because it is being taxed to pay for your insurance.

Umm,.. Do you even know what a national health service actually IS? You get x% taken automatically from your wages, and that covers you for EVERTHING. There is ZERO cost at point of use. You don't need to pay for health care on top of your state health insurance, because you paid for it as part of your state health insurance.

I could bust my leg and it'd be sorted out at no cost. My wife could get pregnant and there will be no cost. I could get cancer and there would be no costs. My dad has his entire lower bowel removed 2 years ago, and there was no cost. Hell, the only time there's a cost is a tiny contribution towards the cost of prescription drugs (roughly ten bucks) UNLESS it's a life saving medication (which would then be free).

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I barely get sick (except for my stint earlier this year as I mentioned) but hell if i'm paying all that money per year for insurance without going to the doctor, they already freaking getting me on home and car insurance! :p I've never filled a claim on any of those those last 2 and when I add up all the money I spent this whole time it just ****es me off! :angry:

That sort of attitude doesn't help. One day you'll actually need medical attention and you'll (a) be financially screwed, and (b) burden everyone else who has been paying insurance with the cost.

That sounds a lot more selfish to me. I'm sure if the system allowed for not treating people in the emergency room who can't pay then people would change their tune pretty quickly.

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