Why does an MRI cost so darn much (at a hospital)?

When it comes to pricey hospital procedures, MRI exams come to mind. Sure enough, according to recently released Medicare pricing data analyzed by NerdWallet Health, the average cost of an MRI in the U.S. is $2,611. Here’s what’s behind that number. Diagnostic Imaging Services is independently-owned, meaning our outpatient imaging services have prices that are far below area hospitals and their imaging affiliates. Lower … Read More

Five unpleasant ways employers are cutting back on healthcare costs

The Affordable Care Act, perhaps better known as Obamacare, set in motion a series of changes that are drastically altering the health-services landscape. The law itself was designed for a few purposes. Primarily, it was enacted in order to reduce the amount of uninsured citizens in this country, and to help spread the cost of medical care across a greater … Read More

Doctors shun patients who pay with medicaid

Most doctors in private practice lose money on Medicaid patients, because the program pays less than commercial health plans or Medicare, the federal insurance program for Americans over 65. Many physicians already don’t accept Medicaid, and millions of new enrollees clamoring for appointments will strain those who do. About 46 percent of physicians accept Medicaid, according to a 15-city survey last … Read More

Health law sign-ups on track to hit 7 million

WASHINGTON (AP) — Beating expectations, President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul was on track to sign up more than 7 million Americans for health insurance on deadline day Monday, government officials told The Associated Press. The 7 million target, thought to be out of reach by most experts, was in sight on a day that saw surging consumer interest as … Read More

States losing billions in refusing to expand Medicaid, report finds

Texas will lose $9.2 billion in 2022; Florida says goodbye to $5 billion; Georgia is out $4.9 billion. A new report details just how much states are losing because they don’t want to expand Medicaid under Obamacare, and it’s not chump change. Red states may be sticking to their Republican beliefs in small government, but the Commonwealth Fund finds they … Read More

Who gets a subsidy under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act?

The new availability of tax credits for qualified low-income people purchasing individual coverage through exchanges could be a game changer. Qualified individuals with family incomes between 100% and 400% of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL) will be eligible for sliding-scale premium tax credits that will cap the amount they may pay for coverage. Individuals with family incomes at or below … Read More

More Doctors Steer Clear of Medicare

By Melinda Beck | The Wall Street Journal Fewer American doctors are treating patients enrolled in the Medicare health program for seniors, reflecting frustration with its payment rates and pushback against mounting rules, according to health experts. The number of doctors who opted out of Medicare last year, while a small proportion of the nation’s health professionals, nearly tripled from … Read More

More Health-Law Changes Coming in 2013

Most of the really big changes—including health-insurance exchanges and tax credits to help people buy coverage—aren’t coming into play until 2014. Still, the provisions going into effect in 2013, along with those that have already been introduced, can affect any changes you might want to make to your health coverage. Next year will see some of the many significant changes … Read More

Self-referral by physicians boosts Medicare imaging costs: GAO

October 31, 2012 — It’s estimated that in 2010, providers who self-referred patients for advanced imaging made about 400,000 more referrals than they would have had they not had a financial interest in the imaging equipment and that these referrals cost the Medicare system an additional $109 million, according to a new Government Accountability Office report. The report was requested … Read More