2009-08-01

How much does a colonoscopy cost? Here's one answer

If we want to contain healthcare costs, one of the first obvious steps is to make sure that patients receive real prices before they have a procedure.

So, from time to time as I run across real-world healthcare prices, I'll pass them on here.

A family member recently had a colonoscopy in December 2008. Beforehand, we googled around a little to get a handle on the cost, but didn't find much. At one point just before the procedure, the patient asked one of the nurses at Greenspring Station Endoscopy how much the total cost would be. She gave a mechanic's shrug, "I don't know."

Everything went smoothly. Our patient liked the staff, was pleased with the experience, and thought Greenspring was a well-run place.

But, as with all doctors and healtcare providers, it would be a great improvement if they would publish prices (or ranges of prices) for prospective patients. In particular they should publish both the "sticker" price and the actual price.

For the nurse's benefit, and for anyone else out there who wants to know, the actual total price was $2,068. This amount, of course, becomes known only after the patient receives the bill indicating the "reduction of billed charges" negotiated by the insurance company**.

----------------------- LIST -- ACTUAL
ITEM ----------------- PRICE --- PRICE
--------------------------------------
Initial consultation.. $ 195 -- $ 130
Prep supplies............ 20 ----- 20
Anesthesia nurse........ 760 ---- 294
Endoscopy facility.... 1,500 ---- 726
Colonoscopy doctor.... 2,025 ---- 465
Lab/tissue diagnosis.... 600 ---- 433
======================================
............. TOTALS $ 5,100 $ 2,068*

*In this particular case, the procedure included cutting out a small number of benign polyps.

**In this case, CareFirst Blue Cross/Blue Shield

6 comments:

  1. So far mine has cost $2400.00 just for the facility cost, $90 for the intial Md visit to "discuss" cost. I still have not seen the "surgeon" cost.I had no issues during the procedure. Upstate Ny.

    ReplyDelete
  2. So far mine has cost $2400.00 just for the facility cost, $90 for the intial Md visit to "discuss" cost. I still have not seen the "surgeon" cost.I had no issues during the procedure. Upstate Ny.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I am 52 and went for a routine colonoscopy. I should have known I was in trouble went I got to Jewish Medical East, Louisville, KY and saw the lavish, over-staffed facilities. It cost nearly $1000 to walk in to that place. I got the procedure and now am afraid of the enormous bills soon to come...for a routine 20 minute procedure! WHAT A RACKET !!!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hospital in Miramar,florida charged my wife $8,000 with no polyps or complications,
    health care in Amerika

    ReplyDelete
  5. Whatever the cost, this procedure has great health benefits!

    ReplyDelete