‘I always price out any labs or tests, even prescriptions’: How people shop for health care

‘I always price out any labs or tests, even prescriptions’: How people shop for health care

“I always price out any labs or tests, even prescriptions before hand the price variations are wild, I then choose the lowest’” — she commented on a Facebook post on my TED talk. I queried her: “Thanks for this! This is my TED talk. I’d like to write about your experience for my blog. Can […]

How much do lab tests cost: $9 or $275 with insurance? Or, how to shop for health care

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

How much do lab tests cost: $9 or $275 with insurance? Or, how to shop for health care

When my TED talk was posted again recently on Facebook, with prominent mention of disparities in lab test costs, there were a lot of comments. This one stood out, so I’m putting it here as part of our “A friend writes” series. She’s in the Knoxville, Tenn., area. “Yup!!! “I had a panel of tests […]

How much do blood tests cost? Or, how to argue a bill for a $3,000-plus trip to the doctor.

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

How much do blood tests cost? Or, how to argue a bill for a $3,000-plus trip to the doctor.

It was one of those shares that seemed hard to believe. The charge for the blood tests at University of North Carolina Hospitals was $2,378, and the person who shared was asked to pay $1,474.92. Cigna, the insurer, paid nothing. The comment: “The UNC facility in question notably distinguished by Cigna as meeting certain quality […]

Blood test costs — $284 or $34 a few blocks away? Cracking the Code

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

Blood test costs — $284 or $34 a few blocks away? Cracking the Code

“When UnitedHealthcare exited the Affordable Care Act exchange in Louisiana last year, Kim Spencer was one of around 29,000 people forced to find a new insurance plan under the federal health care law. She chose Humana, then found a new primary care physician at Tulane University Medical Center, based on recommendations from friends,” our partner […]

A groundbreaking lab test startup: A Drop of Blood. An Instant Diagnosis

There’s a new lab testing service that is quick, painless, inexpensive and  more accurate than the current systems, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal. It’s called Theranos, and it was founded by a Stanford dropout named Elizabeth Holmes. It is announcing a partnership on Monday with Walgreen’s to do quick blood testing […]

Uninsured patients pay more: A first-person account

Filed Under: Costs, Patients, Providers

Uninsured patients pay more: A first-person account

A friend came over to fill out our “tell us what you paid” forms. I’ve taken out some of the details, and left others. “Kidnapped by ambulance” might be a better headline for this, a $2,859 unreimbursed emergency room experience (and don’t miss the $1,699 blood test). I did know that uninsured people pay the […]