Hospital Prices Rising

August 19, 2011

Here’s a set of numbers that could eventually affect your health insurance cost:

For the second month in a row, the cost of hospital services rose by 0.5% last month, according to newly released data from the U.S. Department of Labor Statistics, as compared with July 2010, which saw a 0.3% decline in the prices consumers paid for hospital care.

At the same time, over the twelve-month period that ended in July, the growth-rate for hospital consumer prices remained steady at 7%, which is the same as the 2010 rate.

Specifically, the cost for inpatient hospital care increased by 0.5% last month, while outpatient costs had a slightly smaller increase of only 0.4%. The trend of inpatient prices increasing more than outpatient costs has gone on for the last year, with the total increases equaling 7.5% and 5.9%, respectively.

The figures also show that the prices of physician serves also increased a bit last month – going up by 0.1%, as opposed to July, 2010 which saw an 0.4% increase in the same costs.