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Modern Healthcare: Healthcare costs vary widely by region

By: Maria Castellucci 

The best solutions to decrease the high costs of healthcare services may not be solved at the federal level but in states and their communities, a new study suggests. The report, published by researchers this week at the Health Care Cost Institute, found costs of services vary dramatically depending on a patient's zip code. For example, patients in El Paso, Texas, paid 29% more than the national average in 2014 for inpatient services. This is in stark contrast to patients in Knoxville, Tenn., who paid 37.5% less than the national average for inpatient services that same year. 

The price differences in regions can't be pinned down to one reason, but a variety, said Eric Barrette, an author of the report and Director of Research at the Health Care Cost Institute.