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Fourth Annual FAIR Health Report Captures Pre-Pandemic State of the Healthcare System

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From 2018 to 2019, telehealth increased in utilization by 73 percent, urgent care centers by 47 percent, retail clinics by 39 percent, emergency rooms (ERs) by 33 percent and ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs) by 30 percent. These are among the findings in a new FAIR Health white paper containing the fourth annual edition of FH® Healthcare Indicators and FH® Medical Price Index.

This year’s edition of FH Healthcare Indicators and FH Medical Price Index is intended to provide clarity to all healthcare stakeholders in a rapidly changing healthcare environment. FAIR Health, a national, independent nonprofit organization dedicated to bringing transparency to healthcare costs and health insurance information, bases the reports on its database of over 32 billion privately billed healthcare claim records—the largest such repository in the country.

FH Healthcare Indicators reveal trends and patterns in the places where patients receive healthcare. Focusing on alternative places of service—retail clinics, urgent care centers, telehealth and ASCs—as well as ERs, FH Healthcare Indicators evaluate changes in utilization, geographic and demographic factors, diagnoses, procedures and costs. For example, FH Healthcare Indicators show that in 2019, the median charge amount for a 30-minute new patient office visit (CPT®1 99203) ranged from $150 in a retail clinic to $217 in an office to $239 in an urgent care center.

FH Medical Price Index reports shifts in costs and facilitates useful comparisons among medical prices in six procedure categories from May 2012 to November 2020.

The reports reflect professional fees and related costs for the period November 2019 to November 2020; they do not reflect facility fees.

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