Study quantifies cost differential between physician offices and hospital outpatient care

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A new study quantifies the significant differences in cost for procedures delivered in a physician’s office versus an outpatient department operated by a hospital.

There were wide variations in prices among seven different procedures that can be performed at a doctor’s office versus a hospital-operated outpatient center, according to the study, conducted by researchers affiliated with America’s Health Insurance Plans and published in the American Journal of Managed Care.

In 2013, a 15-minute office visit costs about 21 percent more at a hospital than a doctor’s office; 25 percent more if the visit lasts 40 minutes. A colonoscopy costs about 2.7 times more in a hospital; an upper gastrointestinal endoscopy 3.4 times more; and a chest x-ray costs about 3.6 times more.

Read the full article: FierceHealthFinance

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