It’s no secret that healthcare can cost you an arm and a leg. But in some cases, you’ll be billed for a few additional body parts. What determines whether the rate you’re paying for a procedure is high or higher? The deals negotiated by the health insurers. How well are they negotiating on your behalf? “In many cases, insured patients are getting prices that are higher than they would if they pretended to have no coverage at all.” And how wide is the range? An example: The price for a colonoscopy at Beaumont Hospital-Royal Oak is …$728
with a Blue Cross plan. $999 with a Cigna plan. $1,801 with a Humana plan. The Humana price is so high, there’s no point of getting colonoscopy. You know you’ve been cleaned out. NYT Upshot (gift article for ND readers, regardless of insurance carrier): Hospitals and Insurers Didn’t Want You to See These Prices. Here’s Why.

+ “We’ve starved our public-health sector. The Costa Rica model demonstrates what happens when you put it first.” Atul Gawande in The New Yorker: Costa Ricans Live Longer Than Us. What’s the Secret? (Their coast is rich, not their health insurance operators.)