Report: CA hospitals overcharging patients

A new report by a powerful business group and a large investment fund contends that a large number of California hospitals are overcharging patients. The report, commissioned by the Pacific Business Group on Health and the California Public Employees' Retirement System (CalPERS), found that in 2005, private-pay patients insured through their workplace paid as much as 40 percent more than they should for hospital care. This happened, the researchers said, because hospitals were cost-shifting to make up for shortfalls in Medicare and Medicaid and the cost of uncompensated care.

The report, which was prepared by healthcare consulting and actuarial firm Milliman, concluded that private payers paid a total of $18 billion for hospital services, though the care only cost hospitals about $13 billion. In response, CalPERS and the Pacific Business Group said that they plan to insist on more transparency in hospital pricing in the future.

To learn more about the report:
- read this Modern Healthcare piece (reg. req.)

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