Published US Pricing of Medical Costs Online
The US recently passed a law that requires hospitals to post their pricing. This was done so consumers could make an informed decision on where they are treated and what it would cost them. To the public this sounds like a great idea, right? However, this only confuses and complicates things further. US pricing of medical costs are complicated and far from straight forward!
Up until now, you could google the cost of a procedure or service and would get a dozen different prices as answers. That is because US health care is so complex. There are websites out there that give you ranges of a service and what would be the high, low or fair price, however, these are often not updated or have inaccurate information. They also don’t account for insurance rates, bundled payments or cash customers.
In English Please
With the new law, the prices listed are not required to be written in plain language. They are only required to be ‘machine readable’ in the form of a spreadsheet. They do not include the prices insurance companies have negotiated nor do they give a price as a whole. You also need to understand how to read diagnosis codes to make sure you have the correct service.
More times than not, there are other charges related to the service you need to be unaware of. For example, if you are looking to have a biopsy done, the cost is not just for the biopsy itself. There could be a facility charge, doctor’s fee and pathology fee that will be extra. Those often are billed separately which each item.
The only sure way to know what the price is would be to know who to call and what to ask for but even then, you still might not get an accurate price. If you are considering coming to the US for a surgery or diagnostic test, contact a medical facilitator who is experienced in knowing how to get an accurate price. Health Vantis knows how to get this for you so you don’t spend countless hours going in circles.