UnitedHealth Group says such a shift would reduce spending by 59%.
September 9, 2021 / Jeff Lagasse, Associate Editor
Hospital outpatient departments perform routine procedures and surgeries, such as colonoscopies and cataract removals, for commercially insured individuals at substantially higher prices than Ambulatory Surgery Centers, according to new findings published by UnitedHealth Group.
Shifting outpatient procedures for non-complex commercially insured individuals to ASCs would reduce spending by 59% and save consumers $684 on average per outpatient procedure, the data showed.
WHAT’S THE IMPACT
The average price of common procedures performed in a hospital outpatient department in 2019 was $7,716 –144% more than the average price of the same procedures performed in ASCs, with the data showing that ASC costs tend to hover around $3,160.
Of the more than 6 million routine outpatient procedures performed in hospital outpatient departments, only 10% of procedures are for complex patients, such as those with morbid obesity or those suffering from end stage renal disease, data showed.