Some Hospitals Set Charges at More Than 10 Times Their Costs
Written by Editor   
Thursday, September 18, 2014 02:46 PM

With growing national attention to hospital pricing practices, new data released by the nation's largest nurses organization showed that hospital charges continue to skyrocket with some U.S. hospitals charging more than 10 times their cost — nearly $1,200 for every $100 of their total costs.  

"Such inflated practices continue to price far too many Americans out of access to needed medical care or expose them to financial ruin. It's long past time to rein in the price gouging, and recognize that a healthcare system based on profiteering puts all of us at risk," said Jean Ross, RN, co-president of National Nurses United, whose research arm, the Institute for Health and Socio-Economic Policy, conducted the research.

Findings include:

  • 14 U.S. hospitals charge more than $1,000 for every $100 of their total costs (a charge to cost ratio of 1,000 percent) 
  • The 100 most expensive U.S. hospitals have a charge to cost ratio of 765 percent and higher – more than double the national average of 331 percent.
  • New Jersey, with a statewide average of 583 percent charge to cost average – meaning all its hospitals average a charge of $583 for every $100 of costs – has the most expensive hospitals in the U.S. Florida at 555 percent ranks second.
  • For-profit hospitals continue to dominate the list of those with the highest charges. For-profit corporations average charges of 503 percent of their costs, or $503 for every $100 of total costs.
  • By contrast, government-run hospitals, including federal, state, county, city, or district operated hospitals, with public budgets and boards that meet in public, exercise far more restraint than for-profit or non-profit corporate chains.  Average charge ratios for government-run hospitals are just 235 percent of their costs.

The findings are based on publicly available Medicare Cost Reports as of June, 2013, covering the federal fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, 2012.

Source:  http://www.nationalnursesunited.org/press/entry/new-data-some-hospitals-set-charges-at-10-times-their-costs/