As a huge advocate of consumer price transparency in healthcare; I was immediately interested in this week’s rollout of the state’s website aimed at allowing us to compare pricing on medical services. FloridaHealthPriceFinder.com aggregates pricing information on specific non-emergency medical services from hospitals based on location. I’m already finding more information available than yesterday, so I expect it’ll only continue to become more useful. Yes, I’ve already heard complaints from medical service providers about incomplete information and related excuses. But, that’s to be expected, it’s in the consumer’s interest not necessarily the service provider’s interest, to be transparent. I pulled an example of something I’ve had done, an appendectomy, to compare.
- National Average:$15,022
- Florida Average:$14,757
- Palm Beach County:$11,279
- Broward County:$11,915
Then there’s the specific hospital pricing, the lowest was at Jupiter's Medical Center $5,960 and the highest at West Kendall Baptist Hospital, $25,534.
You hear frequent stories of huge variances in cost for similar services. This one example I pulled at random illustrates the point. Using this site can instantly help you become a much better consumer of healthcare. It can also aid in providing competitiveness in the marketplace based on pricing. If you have a preferred provider with pricing that’s not as competitive, perhaps you could also point them to the pricing on the site to see if they could match. This could be the next good step towards becoming more effective consumers of healthcare and it could save us huge money.
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