Do we all pay the same for medical charges?

A Denver Post article written by Michael Booth and published on November 2, 2012, sheds an interesting light on the current and future pricing of health care services. According to Mr. Booth, a new database has been created and released to the general public. Maintained by the Center for Improving Value in Health Care, this database is designed to compare the costs of health care services within the State of Colorado. The data published shows that savvy patients who shop around can find services at much cheaper prices than others nearby.

Collected information found, as an example, an MRI on the low end might cost $297 while the same service at a top metro-area office could cost as much as $1,261. It also noted that overall health care costs could differ wildly based on where you live. A resident of Archuleta County in 2011 could pay $2,029 while a person living in Pitkin County for the same set of services paid $4,054. Database administrators hope the statistics compiled will help consumers pay equitable prices for services regardless of your zip code. The database also tracks rates of return patients for failed services with the goal to reduce the numbers of patients who seek medical attention multiple times for the same issue. Most recent statistics indicate readmissions per 1,000 patients range from 1 in Broomfield County to 5.2 in Denver.

Tools such as these will become increasingly more important as the mandates from the Affordable Care Act begin to take effect. We at StaffScapes will continue to provide you with necessary updates as developments occur. If dealing with requirements for healthcare and other human resource related issues is too much for you to want to deal with, let us help. Call us at 303-466-7864 or email to learn more about the full suite of services we offer.