Primary Listings

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

All kinds of diagnostic imaging tests are described here – 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

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 Hospital Prices, 2018

Find prices for CA hospitals including Kaiser and Shriners. Inpatient prices are listed in the complicated Charge Master, which shows the charge for every pill, lab test and hospital room rate. MRI and CT tests should be included. More useful are the outpatient files (look for Common25 in the filename), which list the average cost (charge) for top 25 types of outpatient procedures or surgery with CPT code). Hospital Outpatient reports may show prices for Emergency Dept. ER visits, lab tests, CT, MRI, Mammo, x-ray, ultrasound, PT visit, Arthroscopy, colonoscopy, hernia repair, gall bladder removal, etc., depending on their highest volume. Files are in Excel file format. Prices are from June 2018. Consumers can see one hospital at a time.  Provided through California OSHPD.

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 Visit Charges and Medicare Payments 2016

Find the average price in calendar year 2016 for various types of hospital outpatient charges to Medicare patients. File should show charges by physician name, state average and national average prices. Extremely difficult to use, even if somewhat familiar with using Excel files.  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 (2017)

Typical vaginal delivery costs (charges) in Maine in 2017 averaged $11,347 for Childbirth delivery and 60 days of related care. (Does include physician care, but probably not newborn charges). Add $9000 for an uncomplicated C-Section. 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 ($97 average cost for 15-minute appt for an established patient 99213), CT, MRI, x-ray, lab tests and more. Uses CPT codes. From Maine Health Data Organization in State of Maine

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

Maine Health Data Organization’s website shows average charges (median prices) for surgery such as hip or knee replacement, shoulder arthroscopy, carpal tunnel, gall bladder removal; skin growth removal; lab tests such as strep, blood tests, urine. Imaging tests such as mammogram, x-ray, CT, MRI, ultrasound. 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 date from 2016-2017. Office visit and test prices are from 2017 charges. From maine.gov

Maryland Hospital Quality Ratings (MHCC)

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 2015-2016 data, pub. by MD Health Care Commission

Michigan – Compare Hospitals, Physician Groups, Nursing Homes in SE Mich.

The Greater Detroit Area Health Council provides a 7-county health care performance report at MyCareCompare.org. Compare MI hospitals (side-by-side) for childbirth, COPD, emergency department (ER), heart attack, heart failure, cardiac surgery, hip or knee replacements, imaging, infections, patient safety, pneumonia, surgical infection prevention and overall patient satisfaction. See mortality ratings (survival rate) for some conditions. Same info as listed at the federal HospitalCompare site, except mycarecompare might not be updated as often, so check the federal site. The advantage of mycarecompare is that consumers can see Above Average and Below Average comparisons very quickly, for the selected hospitals they want to look at, and all health conditions at once. Very easy to use. Physician group and nursing home results are at this site. GDAHC hospitals 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. It appears that larger hospitals in Lansing and other towns may be included. Medical group data from 2017

Montana Hospital Outpatient Surgery and Test Costs

Compare MT hospital charges for ambulatory surgery and diagnostic tests such as colonoscopy, 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 $5483, $2000 more for big toe), child’s appendix removal, carpal tunnel, skin lesions, upper GI endoscopy; x ray, CT, MRI and other radiology imaging prices listed; 2015 costs

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 Physician Visit, Outpatient Hospital and Dental Prices – Compare (free)

Compare physician office visit prices, dental prices, hospital outpatient tests, PT visits and some surgery prices, as well as some ER prices (estimated at 2017-2018 prices plus 5% inflation) in NH. Choose procedure or test (e.g. lab, Radiology such as x-ray, MRI, CT or ultrasound). Select insurance, or uninsured to compare charges with your deductible. Tonsillectomy, colonoscopy and about 20 different surgeries are in Outpatient, which are bundled to include surgeon and anesthesia costs. Price transparency project developed by the New Hampshire Insurance dept. Excellent website, easy to navigate

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

Excellent government web site from Nova Scotia Canada showing 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 2018

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 (2015)

Find average price ALLOWED in 2015 for 30 common healthcare services, including 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 costs but doesn’t identify if it’s facility cost only or INCLUDES the surgeon or other physician fees. Each service shows the average allowed amount that you or your insurance plan paid in 2015. More relevant than most pricing information, but confusing because of the doctor fee questions. From Virginia Health Information (VHI), updated Dec. 2016

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