MONTGOMERY, AL (WAFF) - A report released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services reveals the cost of Medicare in-patient services vary widely from hospital to hospital in the United States.
An extensive compilation of charge sheet data in 2012 shows some procedures like hip and joint replacements or pacemaker implantations could cost thousands of dollars more at one hospital compared to another.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid services released the data on behalf of the Obama administration to show how much in-patient service costs vary across the country and encourage more dialogue on what hospitals are charging and why.
In Alabama, a charge for a pacemaker implantation procedure at Huntsville Hospital cost nearly $66,000 while the same procedure at Eliza Coffee Memorial Hospital in Florence cost about $64,000, according to the charge sheet report.
A pacemaker implantation cost about $143,000 at the Riverview Hospital in Gadsden. The same procedure cost anywhere between $58,000 to $143,000 in Birmingham hospitals.
The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services could not find a logical explanation for the price variation, according to an NBC News report.
But the Obama administration said the goal of the report is to make costs more transparent for consumers who can do some price shopping in their search for affordable healthcare.
The entire charges sheet report, including a charge compilation of in-patient services for a variety of procedures in Alabama hospitals, can be found here: http://go.cms.gov/193cxEE