WASHINGTON -- The government is shedding light on the mystery of just how high a hospital bill might go - and whether it's cheaper to get that care across town.
The Department of Health and Human Services on Wednesday listed thousands of hospitals' charges for 100 common Medicare services.
There are vast disparities. Joint replacement prices range from about $5,000 at an Ada, Okla., hospital to about $220,000 in Monterey Park, Calif. It's not just geography - hospitals within the same cities also vary widely.
Medicare and insurance companies negotiate lower rates than these "list prices." These prices can affect the co-pays that hit insured patients.
Releasing the information may put pressure on hospitals to lower charges that are out of line.
To comment, the following rules must be followed:
Comments may be monitored for inappropriate content, but the station is under no legal obligation to do so.
If you believe a comment violates the above rules, please use the Flagging Tool to alert a Moderator.
Flagging does not guarantee removal.
Multiple violations may result in account suspension.
Decisions to suspend or unsuspend accounts are made by Station Moderators.
Questions may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please provide detailed information.
Viewers with disabilities can get assistance accessing this station's FCC Public Inspection File by contacting the station with the information listed below. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, 888-835-5322 (TTY), or email@example.com.