US Medical Costs

Medical prices vary substantially throughout the country, and causes are largely unknown.

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Number of Discharges
Avg. amount hospital billed Medicare
Avg. amount paid by Medicare

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services released data on over 3000 U.S. Hospitals that received Medicare inpatient payments in 2012. The data consists of over 7 million datapoints for the 100 most frequently billed discharges, representing 60% of Medicare's total discharges.

The Health Care Financing Administration classifies the severity of a patient's illness to more fairly compensate hospitals for treating severly ill inpatients:

  • CC - Complications and Comorbidities: This is the lower tier in terms of the severity of the illness and should, but not always, require fewer resources to treat. (Comorbidities means there is at least one additional disorder co-occuring with a primary disease).
  • MCC - Major Complication and Comorbidities: Refers to patients that are expected to consume significantly more resources than the same case with just CC. Procedures are not classified as MCC unless there are at least 500 cases/year.