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Trends in Hospital Consolidation and Price of Care


A recent essay published by William B. Vogt, PhD, Senior Economist, RAND Corporation examined the impact of hospital marketing consolidation. The following is an excerpt from his essay, published in the November 2009 edition of Expert Voices for the National Institute for Health Care Management:

The inpatient hospital market in the United States was transformed by a wave of hospital consolidation during the 1990s, which witnessed more than 900 mergers and acquisitions. Many cities came to be dominated by two or three large hospital systems, and by 2003 almost 90 percent of Americans in metropolitan areas faced a “highly concentrated” hospital market, according to U.S. antitrust standards.

  • Hospital prices to private payers rose by a total of 20 percent nationally between 1994 and 2001
  • Hospital prices to private payers increased by 42 percent nationally between 2001 and 2008.
  • Real per-capita spending on hospital care increased from an average annual increase of 0.4 percent between 1993 and 2000 to average increases of 3.8 percent per year between 2000 and 2007.
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February 10, 2010 - Posted by | Cost, healthcare, hospitals | , ,

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