BY EMILY PAYNE
Starting in January, hospitals across the country were required to post their chargemaster prices online for patients to see. Unfortunately, thus far the change is causing more confusion than clarity. What’s ultimately billed to the patient is determined the insurance company’s negotiated rates with the facility, and that varies greatly from one individual to another. There is one thing that stays constant, however, and that is the hospital’s actual expenses. Regardless of what the patient actually pays, every hospital stay includes supplies and staffing, as well as administrative and operational costs.
According to the American Hospital Association, revenue and costs per admission grew at a rate of 5 percent per year from 2000 to 2009. According to data from AHA, the average daily expense of an inpatient stay increased from $1,102 in 1999 (the first year information is available) to $2,338 in 2016. Expenses have increased the most at non-profit hospital facilities, jumping from $1,139 in 1999 to $2,488 in 2016. During that same period, for-profit inpatient expenses increased from $999 to $1,889.
Hospitals are utilizing a variety of approaches to bring expenses down, including more-efficient staffing, automation, improved administrative systems and budgeting tools. Still, some health systems are better than others when it comes to reining in expenses, and regional factors like cost of labor affect the bottom line.
So where are expenses greatest? Take a look at the slideshow above to see which states rack up the most expenses per day of an inpatient visit.
Original article from Benefits Pro.