OKLAHOMA CITY – An Oklahoma City surgery center is offering a new kind of price transparency, posting guaranteed all-inclusive surgery prices online. The move is revolutionizing medical billing in Oklahoma and around the world.
Dr. Keith Smith and Dr. Steven Lantier launched Surgery Center of Oklahoma 15 years ago, founded on the simple principle of price honesty.
“What we’ve discovered is health care really doesn’t cost that much,” Dr. Smith said. “What people are being charged for is another matter altogether.”
Surgery Center of Oklahoma started posting their prices online about four years ago.
The prices are all-inclusive quotes and they are guaranteed.
“When we first started we thought we were about half the price of the hospitals,” Dr. Lantier remembers. “Then we found out we’re less than half price. Then we find out we’re a sixth to an eighth of what their prices are. I can’t believe the average person can afford health care at these prices.”
Their goal was to start a price war and they did.
Surgery Center of Oklahoma does accept private insurance, but the center does not accept Medicaid or Medicare.
Dr. Smith said federal Medicare regulation would not allow for their online price menu.
They have avoided government regulation and control in that area by choosing not to accept Medicaid or Medicare payments.