Hospitals will have to now tell you their prices. This is “yuge.”

The following is a news analysis.

On my Sunday TV program Full Measure, I’ve done quite a bit of reporting on the capricious cost of medical services at hospitals and how hard it is to get pricing upfront.

President Trump just instituted a new rule that will require hospitals to make that information available.

This could be a game changer.

As I reported, the prices hospitals charge vary widely and often do not seem to correlate to anything in particular. Insurance and private payers may be radically overcharged.

From my story comparing prices:

One hospital in the Los Angeles area charged $400 for the knee MRI. But a hospital in smaller Des Moines, Iowa quoted $3,500 ($3,536). That’s eight and a half times as much for the exact same procedure.

Similar dramatic ranges are found within the same region. In Orlando, one hospital charged as little as $877 total. Another charged close to $2,000 ($1,980) and didn’t even include the fee to read the MRI.

Hospitals in Los Angeles charged from $400 to $2,800 ($2,850).

Raleigh-Durham: about a $1,000 ($1,023) to $2,700 ($2,775).

Des Moines also from about $1,000 ($1,071) to $3,500 ($3,536).

Dallas and Fort Worth: $500 ($508) to $4,200 ($4,274).

And the biggest disparity was in the New York City area. The cheapest knee MRI was about $440. Another hospital in the area the most expensive in the survey charged $4,500!

Under President Trump’s new rules, patients will be able to get this information upfront.

According to CNBC, “Hospitals will now be required to post their standard charges for services, which include gross charges, the negotiated rates with insurers and the discounted price a hospital is willing to accept from a patient.”

Read more about the Trump rule by clicking the link below:

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