Healthcare’s top five price variations in the U.S.

 

According to Becker’s Hospital Review

Hunter Frint

 

Data from HCCI’s database surprising price discrepancies across the nation, as well as in-state. Here are the top five relevant and shocking statistics found.

 

Some prices work to the advantage of people living in certain states as the majority they were priced lower than the national average, while other states were priced above at extremely high rates.

 

  1. In New Hampshire and Wisconsin, more than 20 percent of healthcare services are twice the national average price.
  2. In Arizona, Florida, Maryland and Tennessee, more than 90 percent of healthcare services are priced lower than the national average.

The data also showed price differences that varied quite a bit between cities in the same state.

Top five graphic

  1. Prices for knee replacements varied most in California, with a $27,243 average price difference between those performed in Riverside ($30,261) versus Sacramento ($57,504).
  2. In Ohio, the average price of a pregnancy ultrasound in Cleveland was almost three times more expensive than Canton ($522 and $183 respectively), although the two cities are only 60 miles apart.

 

In different states, price variation spanned across different healthcare services and procedures as well.

 

  1. For example, states have similar prices for acupuncture, while prices for cataract removal vary significantly from state to state. The greatest variation in prices was observed for imaging, radiology and lab tests.

 

This data from HCCI’s National Chartbook of Health Care excludes nine states, which according to Becker’s Hospital Review, did not have sufficient data available or had state laws restricting access to data. The states are Alabama, Arkansas, Hawaii, Idaho, Michigan, Montana, South Dakota, Vermont and Wyoming.

 

These price variations can be chalked up to regional income differences, state tax differences and several other factors. These factors should not affect the price variations in one country so greatly though, and it is possible some uniformity and regulation is in order.

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