Office Visit: A pricing advantage | The Journal Record

A local daily newspaper recently ran an editorial calling for the establishment of price transparency legislation for health care providers. Their call for this change was appropriate but only half the story. Who could be opposed to greater transparency in any field of endeavor?

But there is more to this story. Most people in this country are protected from paying the full cost of their medical care. Some other entity – Medicare or insurance – generally pays the bill. Because of this protection there has been scant public pressure for transparency.

In the provider community those most interested in a change tend to be privately owned clinics and hospitals. They know full well they already enjoy a pricing advantage. Legislation requiring transparency would only work to their benefit.

But before we rush impulsively into what appears to be economic common sense there is one factor to consider. Community-based hospitals finance major pieces of the health care puzzle through pricing mechanisms.

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Office Visit: A pricing advantage – The Journal Record.