I blog about free markets in medical care and transparent pricing.
The Wall Street Journal did a piece recently that revealed that physician charges often times more than double once hospitals buy the physician practices. DUH! If you think the physician compensation increases after the hospitals buy their practices, you go to the back of the class. This story is too little too late in my opinion. Many of the corporate players that patronize the WSJ have already made out like bandits. Many physicians have succumbed to the hostile takeovers of hospitals threatening them with all they could throw at them, aided, of course, by the provisions in Obamacare that make the private practice of medicine more difficult. There has already been a lot of damage occur prior to the printing of this article.
It will be up to smaller media outlets to educate large numbers of people about the cartel and how it works with Uncle Sam to fleece the sick with gigantic medical bills and to fleece the healthy with their ideas of “wellness” programs.
A physician-owned gastroenterology lab here in Oklahoma City will do colonoscopies for less than $600, all inclusive. One of the “not for profit” hospitals here has hired a bunch of gastroenterologists and the charge for a colonoscopy there is now close to $3000. Surgeries typically done for $3000 at our facility (surgeon, anesthesia and facility charges inclusive) are $18,000 to $27,000, at “not for profit” hospitals here in town.
This has been going on for some time now and it is little consolation that the WSJ publishes this article now. They were made aware of this issue as well as the pricing at our facility long ago.
But then, we didn’t buy any ads from them.
G. Keith Smith, M.D.