If you buy all your clothes at Nieman Marcus, rather than at Banana Republic, TJ Maxx or Target, you’re spending a lot of money. Are the shirts, jeans or navy blue blazers that much better for four times the cost?
We almost never ask ourselves these questions in health care. We go to the most expensive hospitals in Boston for everything from an X-ray to a complex cancer treatment.
That habit means “the biggest hospitals have the highest price and get all of the payments,” said Aron Boros, director of the Center for Health Information and Analysis (CHIA). The result: We spend more money than we need to on routine care with no apparent benefit. The white shirt (say, a gall bladder removal) is of the same or better quality at Land’s End (your community hospital) as at Bloomingdale’s (a big Boston teaching hospital).
Boros just released the latest figures on the gap between hospitals that get paid very well in Massachusetts and those that are (barely) scraping by.
“This is more evidence that the market isn’t changing as rapidly as one would hope,” he said.
More evidence because this is the second report to show that four out of five health care dollars in Massachusetts go to half the hospitals, the most expensive ones. Continue reading