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Hospital Price Transparency Analysis Finds Wide Variation in Prices

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Healthcare Dive analyzed the new hospital procedure pricing data released by a handful of separate health systems across the country and found dramatic price ranges for the same procedure, even within the same hospital. Prices swing widely between markets, too. Healthcare Dive examined the prices for joint replacements and deliveries, including caesarean sections.

For the analysis, Healthcare Dive collected data from five hospitals on negotiated rates with insurers. The five hospitals include Kaiser Permanente Oakland Medical Center, Sutter Health’s California Pacific Medical Center – Van Ness, University of Florida Health Shands, Northwestern Memorial Hospital and NYC Health + Hospitals Elmhurst. These were selected because prices were accessible and locations are spread in different regions of the country. Data for each hospital was downloaded from its website.

Data was collected for three services, determined by specific codes. The codes and corresponding descriptors are the following:

  • 470 Major hip and knee joint replacement or reattachment of lower extremity without MCC
  • 788 Cesarean section without sterilization without CC/MCC
  • 807 Vaginal delivery without sterilization or D&C without CC/MCC

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