Study: Wide price differences at Mass. hospitals

May 26, 2011

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BOSTON—A new study is documenting dramatic differences in the price that Massachusetts hospitals charge for similar procedures.

The report released Thursday by the state Division of Health Care Finance and Policy found at least a threefold price difference for every service.

Massachusetts General Hospital, for example, was paid a median price of $9,225 per case of pneumonia, compared to Brockton Hospital which was paid a median price of $5,524.

A second study found that private group health insurance premiums in Massachusetts jumped by as much as 10 percent from 2007 to 2009, far faster than the increase in the rate of inflation of about 2 percent in the Northeast.

Deductibles and co-payments also increased during the same time.

The Patrick administration said the studies show the need to rein in health costs.