Website will help Colo. consumers compare hospital prices

COLORADO-MEDICAL-PRICE-COMP

DENVER — Coloradans will get a new tool to help compare prices for some procedures at hospitals when a new website goes live.

Colorado Medical Price Compare, started on Thursday. The site shows median prices for all health insurers and Medicaid. It will show you deductibles and co-pays as well.

The Center for Improving Value in Health Care created the website. They say it is the first time price information based on actual payments by insurers and patients will be available to local consumers.

The site currently offers information for four services: total knee joint replacement, total hip joint replacement, uncomplicated vaginal birth and cesarean birth

The website gets its data from the Colorado All Payer Claims Database, which is managed by the state legislature.

Consumers can use it to compare health services at different hospitals. While individual prices will vary depending on your health insurance provider, and a number of other factors, the site does allow you to compare provider’s prices.

“This marks the first time hospitals have seen their commercial price data alongside their peers,” said Alicia Goroski, Director of Performance Measurement at CIVHC in a news release. “Transparent price information is a first step towards identifying opportunities to bend the cost curve.”

Right now just 2012 prices are on the website, but the center said 2013 prices should be added soon.