Primary Listings

Diagnostic Imaging Procedures: x-ray, MRI, CT, PET scans (RadiologyInfo)

All kinds of diagnostic imaging procedures and tests are described at RadiologyInfo. Examples include angiograms, colonoscopy and colonography, x-ray guided biopsy, mammography, MRI, CAT scans, head CT, PET scans, ultrasound, bone densitometry, calcium scoring, some cancer treatments and hundreds more. RadiologyInfo™ is the public information Web site of the American College of Radiology (ACR) and the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA). It informs the public about diagnostic radiology and interventional procedures, nuclear medicine and radiation therapy.

Epilepsy Foundation – Importance of EEG Tests

The Epilepsy Foundation describes the importance of EEG tests. Short description of EEG tests, and other brain imaging tests such as CT or MRI scans, that may be ordered for testing for seizures. The Epilepsy Foundation is a major nonprofit organization

Screening for Carotid Artery Stenosis NOT Recommended (2014)

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends AGAINST screening for asymptomatic carotid artery stenosis (CAS) in the general adult population. The Task Force concluded that for individuals with asymptomatic CAS the benefits of screening (e.g. by duplex ultrasound) do not outweigh the harms, since both the testing strategy (angiography) and the treatment with carotid endarterectomy can cause harm. Stroke risk is addressed.

Other Helpful Listings

California – Average Inpatient and Outpatient Prices, 2019 Hospital Chargemaster

California provides average prices for inpatient and outpatient procedures for 2019, as listed in the hospital’s chargemaster. All CA hospitals are included. The most useful and understandable Excel files are the ones that show prices for at least 25 common outpatient procedures. Look for separate file names (e.g. Common25 in the filename), or the tab sheet for form AB 1045. ER visits, MRI and CT test prices should be included, along with selected outpatient surgery. The average cost (charge) for top 25 types of outpatient procedures or surgery includes CPT codes. Outpatient reports may show hospital prices for Emergency Room visits, office visit code 99213, lab tests, CT, MRI, Mammogram, x-ray, ultrasound, Physical Therapy visit, Arthroscopy, colonoscopy, endoscopy, carpal tunnel, hernia repair, gall bladder removal (laparoscopic cholecystectomy), lumbar injections, tonsillectomy, ear tubes and more, depending on each hospital’s highest volume.

California 2019 inpatient prices are listed only in the massive and complicated Charge Master, which shows the charge for every pill, lab test and hospital room rate. This is where you will find maternity, obstetrics, newborn nursery, labor and delivery charges. But you will need to wade through a few thousand services listed in the chargemaster to find what you want to know.  Look for CDM in the file name.

Files are in Excel file format. Prices are from 2019. Consumers can see one hospital at a time.  Rate increases are also shown in these files. Provided through California OSHPD, the state government Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development.

Food and Drug Administration Home Page

The FDA regulates drugs, dietary supplements, medical devices, vaccines, and more. Example of news: drug shortages, new drug approvals, medical device recalls, disposing unused medicines, opioid medications. See consumer section on Radiation-Emitting products to learn about x-rays, CT scans and MRIs.

Hospital Clinic and Office Visit Charges and Medicare Payments 2017

Find Hospital Clinic and Office Visit charges (average price) for 2017, and the payments that Medicare made. Find average charges for about 13,000 different codes (depending whether office or hospital facility-based).  National average prices are in the Procedure Summary file. Extremely difficult to use, even if somewhat familiar with using Excel files. File uses HCPCS codes. The most common codes were office visits 99213 (average charge about $134) and 99214 (average charge about $201). Medicare allowed about $71 for code 99213 and about $105 for 99214. Lab tests, x-ray, emergency department visits are in the file. Physician charges may be available in the Provider Summary Table. Calendar year 2017 data from CMS updated 2019.

Louisiana Hospital Ratings and Prices – LA Hospital Inform

Find range of charges (low price and high price) for Medicare patients at Louisiana hospitals, both inpatient and outpatient. Hospital-specific inpatient charges do not include childbirth or C-section, since it’s Medicare only. Find hip or knee surgery prices, gall bladder removal, psychiatric admission, rehab, heart problems, stent, stomach problems, stroke, GI hemorrhage, kidney failure, COPD, pneumonia, diabetes, bowel surgery, more; outpatient Medicare prices include ER visits, heart tests such as cardiac cath, EKG, heart imaging, valve repair; CAT scan or CT angiography, GI endoscopy, more. Quality scores and volumes (which cover all patients), are similar to those at HospitalCompare, but may be less current (2017). LA Hospital Inform is sponsored by the Louisiana Hospital Association; Price ranges from 2017 (outpatient and inpatient)

Maine – Average Charge for Hospital and Doctor Visits (2018-2019)

Find the average charge for both hospital and doctor visits in 2018 to 2019. Typical vaginal delivery costs (charges) in Maine in the 12 months ending March 31, 2019 averaged $12,659 for Childbirth delivery and 60 days of related care. (Does include physician care, but probably not newborn charges). An uncomplicated C-Section averaged just over $21,000. A few other charges by hospital, for hip or knee joint replacement, arthroscopy and gall bladder surgery. Find many median (middle) prices here physician office visits ($102 average cost for 15-minute appt for an established patient 99213), CT, MRI, x-ray, lab tests and more. A one hour crisis psychotherapy visit averaged $225. An ongoing 60 minute psychotherapy visit (90837) cost $100 on average. Uses CPT codes. From Maine Health Data Organization in State of Maine

Maine Charges for Surgery, x-ray, imaging, lab tests (MHDO)

Compare recent charges in Maine for surgery, x-ray, imaging and lab tests across hospitals and medical groups. MHDO Maine Health Data Organization’s website shows average charges (median prices) for surgery such as hip or knee replacement, shoulder arthroscopy, carpal tunnel, gallbladder removal; skin growth removal; lab tests such as strep, blood tests, urine. Imaging tests such as mammogram, x-ray, CT, MRI, ultrasound. Diagnostic procedures such as colonoscopy. Good news is that both physician and hospital charges for surgery are shown to give you an idea of total cost (and discounts); CPT codes listed. Surgical prices from 2018-2019. Office visit and test prices are from 2018-2019 charges. Updated in 2020. Search by city or zip code radius. From maine.gov

Maryland Hospital Quality Ratings (MHCC)

Compare Maryland hospital quality ratings. Overall consumer satisfaction, and Quality Measures on common groups of illnesses or conditions for which people are hospitalized in Maryland. Topics include different types of infections, emergency department waiting time, heart conditions, pneumonia, COPD, hip and knee surgery, imaging, stroke, maternity and newborn care, surgery infections for hysterectomy, colon surgery and more. Click on hospital name to see actual scores and details. MD Hospital Guide generally shows 2016-2017 data, pub. by MD Health Care Commission (MHCC)

Michigan – Compare Physician Groups in SE Mich.

Compare physician groups in southeast Michigan. The Greater Detroit Area Health Council provides a 7-county health care performance report at MyCareCompare.org. Compare medical groups (side-by-side) for diabetes care, cancer screening, blood pressure control, antibiotic use, strep throat testing, well child visits, immunizations, weight assessment, physical activity counseling, nutrition counseling, sexual health, low back pain, asthma medications, cholesterol and heart disease care. Easy to use. Medical groups are in Detroit, Ann Arbor, Pontiac and counties: Wayne, Washtenaw, Livingston, Macomb, Monroe, Oakland, and St. Clair. GDAHC was an early leader in quality transparency. Medical group data from 2018

Montana Hospital Outpatient Surgery and Test Costs

Find out how much outpatient surgery and imaging tests cost in Montana. Compare MT hospital charges for ambulatory surgery and diagnostic tests such as colonoscopy (median charge $2,127 for a diagnostic colonoscopy code 45378), sigmoidoscopy, breast biopsy, cardiac stress tests, cardiac catheterization. All prices EXCLUDE surgeon fees and other physician costs. PricePoint system shows facility prices in the past, for common surgical procedures such as tonsillectomy, cataracts, ear tubes, knee cartilage, bunions (median $6,797, add $3,000 more for a bunion removal on the big toe), child’s appendix removal, carpal tunnel, gallbladder removal, skin lesions, upper GI endoscopy; x ray, CT, MRI and other radiology imaging prices listed; 2018 costs. Consumers may wish to add 5.8% medical inflation to estimate 2020 prices.

MRI Safety – Official ACR Guidance on Safe Practices, 2013

American College of Radiology (ACR) guidance document for safe MR practices, 2013 as published by AJR. Updates the prior 2002 and 2004 white papers and 2007 Guidance. Anyone who remembers the horrific 2001 accident in Valhalla, NY, will want to learn about magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) suite design, personnel screening and three staff classifications, device & object screening, signs & labeling, adverse event prevention, four zones and more

New Hampshire Prices for Physician Visits, ER, Outpatient Hospital and Dental Care – Compare (free)

Compare New Hampshire prices for physician office visits, Emergency Room, psychotherapy, dental care, hospital outpatient lab tests, PT visits and some surgery. Ambulance and medium level ER prices are included in NH. Prices are estimated at 2018-2019 prices plus 5% inflation. Statewide cost estimate is also shown. Choose Medical or Dental. Select insurance, or uninsured to compare charges with your deductible.  Select procedure or test (e.g. lab, Radiology such as x-ray, MRI, CT or ultrasound). Tonsillectomy, hernia repair, colonoscopy and about a dozen different surgeries are bundled to include surgeon and anesthesia costs. Price transparency project developed by the New Hampshire Insurance Department. NH HealthCost is an excellent website, easy to navigate

Nova Scotia Wait Times for Tests and Surgery Editor's Pick

Excellent government web site from Nova Scotia Canada shows the wait times for diagnostic tests such as MRIs, CT, bone density scans, mammograms, breast biopsy (needle), ultrasound, and upper GI series. Waiting times for scheduled surgery such as ear tubes, hip or knee replacement, bunionectomy, carpal tunnel, gallbladder removal, heart or valve surgery, hysterectomy, hernia repair, tonsillectomy, and cataract surgery; and how long to get a consult with physician specialists (such as cancer specialists). View by doctor’s or surgeon’s name, in addition to hospital and facility. Information is very recent, updated 2019. Editor’s Pick for novascotia.ca

Oregon Hospital Guide to Costs

Compare up to 3 hospitals at a time on 2016 costs paid by commercial insurance companies or patient-paid amounts. Median amounts paid (not charges) are shown for 100 most common outpatient procedures and 50 most common inpatient procedures. Medicare and Medicaid are excluded. Includes maternity & newborn payments, heart care, stents, cardiac cath, hip and knee replacement, many surgery payments such as cataracts, hernia, hysterectomy, kidney removal, gall bladder, breast biopsy, carpal tunnel, mastectomy, tonsillectomy, endoscopy, shoulder surgery, appendectomy. Amounts paid for CT, MRI, Nuclear Medicine, x-ray and ultrasound; chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Site by the Oregon Association of Hospitals and Health Systems (OAHHS) to meet state requirements. Hospitals also list their financial performance measures for 2017 at this website.

Vermont – 2019 Outpatient Diagnostic Test Prices Editor's Pick

Compare 2019 hospital prices for lab work, x-ray & imaging tests. MRI charges averaged $1942 [pelvis angiography] to $4134 [MRI-brain, multiple sequences] with physician fee. CT scan of head, neck, face, chest, spine, pelvis, abdomen (overall CT average $1358 to $4120); digital screening mammograms average $548 with physician charge. Specific test prices for urinalysis, glucose, Metabolic Panel ($111 average), lipid panel ($97), PSA (average $131, range 61 to 267), CBC (range $59 to $72), strep test group A (range from $74 to $82), Pap test (average 122 to 129), pregnancy test (average $58), blood typing, OB ultrasound first trimester (average $903), x-rays, Cardiology EKG or echocardiogram, PT evaluation ($302 average, moderate complexity), colonoscopies ($3660 without biopsy) and more. CPT codes listed. Vermont probably has the best State site for hospital outpatient diagnostic test cost comparison. Some average prices in VT have gone down this year, which may support useful price comparisons among hospitals. Prices good through Sept. 2019. Tables 3B through 3O.

Virginia Healthcare Prices – Ambulatory Surgery, Tests, Hospital Stays

Virginia Healthcare Prices shows average price ALLOWED (commercial insurance prices) in 2017 for almost 40 common healthcare services in VA. Includes a mix of outpatient, clinic, hospital stays and other services such as an ambulance (average $522) or helicopter ride (almost $17,000). Examples: hospitalizations (maternity), outpatient xray/imaging, CT and MRI tests; colonoscopy, mammogram; inpatient or ambulatory surgery (e.g. hernia, gall bladder, knee replacement, tonsillectomy, kidney stones); and ER or office visits. Shows median and range of costs and provides a breakout by type of cost: facility, surgeon, anesthesiologist, etc. Also shows average price by setting: clinic vs. hospital vs. ambulatory surgical center; and region of Virgina. Median physician office visit cost was $77.  The 2019 report shows the average allowed amount for each service that you or your insurance plan ACTUALLY PAID in 2017. More relevant than most pricing information, but lags in timeliness. Add at least 4.1% medical inflation rate to estimate 2019 costs. Virginia Healthcare Pricing Transparency, from Virginia Health Information (VHI), updated May 2019

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