SPOTLIGHT: Inflated Hospital Prices Fly High in North Carolina

In a new report from The Carolina Journal, North Carolina hospitals are being called out for expensive and variable hospital pricing, huge price markups from Medicare rates, and a lack of price transparency.

Researchers investigated the state’s compliance with federal price transparency rules across 16 common shoppable services at 140 hospitals. The report found that only 51% of hospitals disclosed commercial insurance prices across, with just five hospitals disclosing commercial prices for every service.

“Hospitals in North Carolina, in my opinion, continue to give the middle finger to presidential executive orders issued by both the current and the previous president of the United States.”

North Carolina State Treasurer Dale Folwell

The report also found North Carolina hospitals markup prices up to 1,120% of Medicare rate for routine care and basic services. A commercially insured patient might pay $1,418.04 at one hospital for gallbladder surgery or as much as $13,469 for the surgery at another, a price difference of 850%. 

To top it off: An earlier report found that North Carolina hospital systems sued 7,517 patients over medical debt, using the court system to charge interest on medical debt judgments and to place liens on family homes. North Carolinians deserve better – which is why Better Solutions is fighting for more transparency in healthcare pricing and to hold corporate hospital systems accountable for their role in driving up healthcare costs as a whole.