As consumers get savvier about shopping for health care, some are finding a curious trend: More hospitals, imaging centers, outpatient surgery centers and pharmacy chains will give them deep discounts if they pay cash instead of using insurance.
When Nancy Surdoval, a retired lawyer, needed a knee X-ray last year, Boulder Community Hospital in Colorado said it would cost her $600, out of pocket, using her high-deductible insurance, or just $70 if she paid cash upfront. When she needed an MRI to investigate further, she was offered a similar choice—she could pay $1,100, out of pocket, using her insurance, or $600 if she self-paid in cash.
What I’ve found at California Hernia Specialists is that many centers outside of ours charge higher rates than we typically charge within our facility. We see many patients who have deductibles that are higher than our cash rates and thus they often choose to pay cash instead of use their insurance. Our office specializes in helping you understand your financial obligations before your surgery so that you can make an informed decision.
You can learn about our cash rates on our “Insurance and Costs” page.
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