Medicare Spills Beans On Hospital Billing

A Wall Street Journal article by Matthew Heimer sheds some light on just how disconnected the costs of care of hospital bills can be from one hospital to another for the exact same procedure and how much those amounts can differ from what Medicare allows for reimbursement! Also the lack of transparency in medical prices makes it difficult for consumers to make informed decisions about their treatment and at what facility location they should have their procedure preformed.

I personally recently tried to get an estimate on a non-Medicare medical procedure in advance and it was very difficult as well as very time consuming. When I finally got a "so called" estimate, they told me that  they couldn't be held responsible for the accuracy of the estimate. Go figure! In my opinion, not many other industries could get away with such vague price estimates and/or high prices for things that are generally important and difficult to do without. 

Another similar type article in the the local Sarasota Herald-Tribune by Donna Koehn, but this article entitled "Charges vary widely between local hospitals, new data show" is more relevant to the local Sarasota, FL area. Here is one exerpt from the article, "CMS spokesman Brian Cook said what hospitals ask is typically about five or six times what Medicare pays." .

Original Web Links to articles are no longer accessible but I listed the sources below anyway: 


"Medicare spills beans on hospital billing”

"Charges vary widely between local hospitals, new data show”

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