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Health Care Price Transparency Could Save Hundreds of Billions of Dollars

Yesterday in the Hotline we spotlighted the rapid inflation in health care costs over the past decade since Obamacare was made the law of the land.  A new study by CTUP co-founder Arthur Laffer and Cynthia Fisher estimates that requiring health care providers to post prices for their medical services could save patients and companies more than $500 billion a year.

The study documents wild swings in prices of the same medical service depending on the insurance company and the provider. The example below shows that in the same geographical area, the cost of a brain MRI can range from $700 to $6,700 – for the same service:

The study concludes: “Over the last 50 years, U.S. healthcare spending as a share of GDP has gone from in line with the OECD average to nearly twice as much. At the same time, the U.S. has gone from a leader to a laggard in life expectancy. America has a momentous opportunity to put these trends in reverse through systemwide healthcare price transparency.”

Price transparency, combined with insurance reforms – which would require patients to pay for routine medical expenditures out of pocket – would incentivize healthcare consumers to be more price-sensitive, which would drive down rampant medical costs.

Here’s a link to the report itself:

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