News
Media coverage of HCCI’s original research

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Jun
30

Research Collaborative Releases Major New Collection of North Carolina Health Care Spending Data

HCCI, Duke, and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina release interactive data on state health care spending to inform the public and policymakers. DURHAM, NC – Researchers at The Health Care Cost Institute, Duke-Margolis Center for Health Policy, Duke University School of Medicine Department of Population Health Sciences, and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nort...
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Jun
22

Time: The Difficulty Of Counting the COVID-19 Pandemic’s Full Death Toll

HCCI's research on daily deaths during the coronavirus pandemic was featured in a Time article. From the article:  "City health officials reported about 200 at-home deaths per day during the height of the pandemic, compared with a daily average of 35 between 2013 and 2017. Again, experts believe that excess is presumably caused either directly or indirectly by the pandemic. And nationally, a ...
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Jun
16

The New York Times: Most Coronavirus Tests Cost About $100. Why Did One Cost $2,315?

 HCCI's research with iFHP on international comparisons of health care prices was cited in an article in The New York Times on COVID-19 test prices.  From the article:  "How can a simple coronavirus test cost $100 in one lab and 2,200 percent more in another? It comes back to a fundamental fact about the American health care system: The government does not regulate health care price...
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May
27

CNN: Daily deaths in US now more than 10% higher than in previous years

HCCI's research on daily deaths during the coronavirus pandemic was featured on CNN.  From the article:  "The number of people dying each day in the United States since early April has been consistently more than 10% higher than in previous years, according to a new report from the Health Care Cost Institute in Washington. The institute connects this rise in daily deaths to the coronavir...
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May
13

An Inflection Point for HCCI: Upcoming Releases, New COVID-19 Projects & Expanded Dataset

It's been a while since my last broad-based update on HCCI's work. With so much going on in the world, I want to bring you up to speed on the many activities underway at HCCI, including our response to the COVID-19 pandemic and our transition to a new dataset that will incorporate claims from Aetna, Humana and Blue Health Intelligence. Everyone's attention is rightfully focused on COVID-19 right n...
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Apr
17

Health Affairs: Despite The Families First Coronavirus Response Act, COVID-19 Evaluation Is Not Necessarily Free

HCCI's 2018 Annual Report was cited in a Health Affairs article on coverage of COVID-19 testing.  From the article:  "Consider cost sharing for a privately insured patient under seven possible evaluation scenarios, shown in exhibit 1. First, if the patient is evaluated in person but does not receive any testing, cost sharing could be imposed for the visit. According to an analysis of nat...
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Mar
07

MarketWatch: How much does it cost to get tested for the coronavirus? Unfortunately the answer could depend on how good your insurance is

HCCI's research on emergency room billing was cited in a MarketWatch article on coronavirus testing.  From the article:  "It's also important to get checked out by a doctor first because if you skip the doctor and go straight to the emergency room, you run the risk of your insurer refusing to cover the ER visit, Donovan said. Insurers have been known to reject claims for emergency depart...
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Mar
01

The Dallas Morning News: Texans are paying more for health insurance — and using it less

 HCCI's 2017 Annual Report and Healthy Marketplace Index were featured in an article in The Dallas Morning News.  Texans are paying more for health insurance — and using it less Nearly everyone is spending more on health care, often a lot more. But did you realize people are using it less? Utilization of health care is growing... https://www.dallasnews.com/business/health-care/2020/03/01...
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Feb
13

HCCI releases 2018 Health Care Cost and Utilization Report

Per-Person Health Care Spending Grew 18% from 2014 to 2018, Driven Mostly by Prices After remaining stable for several years, utilization increased slightly in 2018 Access the report here. WASHINGTON D.C. — Average employer-sponsored insurance (ESI) spending rose to $5,892 per person in 2018, according to the Health Care Cost Institute's annual Health Care Cost and Utilization Report, which analyz...
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Feb
07

Kaiser Health News: Women Shouldn’t Get A Bill For An IUD … But Sometimes They Do

HCCI data was recently cited in a Kaiser Health News story on IUD billing.  From the article:  "In all likelihood, most women probably won't get a bill for IUD insertion or a birth control prescription. Data compiled by the Health Care Cost Institute, an independent research group funded by insurers, suggested that in 2017 fewer than 5% of women had an out-of-pocket bill for the insertio...
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Jan
30

The Washington Post: The Health 202: Health-care costs might decline if hospitals are forced by the Trump administration to disclose their prices

HCCI research on the potential effects of price transparency on price variation was cited in a recent Washington Post article. "There is more wiggle room on the high side — it could make up for price increases on the lower side," said Kevin Kennedy, one of the study researchers. The Health 202: Health-care costs might decline if hospitals are forced by the Trump administration to disclose the...
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Jan
29

HCCI Provides Comments for CMS's Proposed Transparency in Coverage Rule

On November 27, 2019 CMS proposed a rule (CMS-9915-P) requiring group health plans and health insurance issuers in the individual and group markets to disclose cost-sharing information to enrollees, including an estimates of an enrollee's cost-sharing liability for covered items or services furnished by a particular provider. As also noted in our comments on rule CMS-1717-P, HC...
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Dec
27

The New York Times: In the U.S., an Angioplasty Costs $32,000. Elsewhere? Maybe $6,400.

HCCI's work with iFHP on international comparisons of health care prices was featured in a New York Times article.   In the U.S., an Angioplasty Costs $32,000. Elsewhere? Maybe $6,400. - The New York Times Enter some description here... https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/27/upshot/expensive-health-care-world-comparison.html?smid=nytcore-ios-share
Dec
23

HCCI Announces Major New Funding Commitment from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

$2 million grant will support HCCI's ongoing work to study drivers of health care spending WASHINGTON (December 23, 2019) — The The Health Care Cost Institute (HCCI) today announced a $2 million grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) that will support a significant expansion of HCCI's commercial claims data. With new data sources, and enabled by this grant, HCCI's commercial claims d...
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Dec
17

Los Angeles Times: Not everyone has eye-popping deductibles: How one union kept medical bills in check

HCCI's 2017 Health Care Cost and Utilization Report was cited in a Los Angeles Times article.  From the article:  "Between 2013 and 2017, the average price nationally for an inpatient hospital admission rose more than 15%, almost three times the rate of general inflation, according to an analysis of commercial insurance data by the Health Care Cost Institute, a Washington think tank. The...
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Dec
17

Vox: A CT scan costs $1,100 in the US — and $140 in Holland

HCCI's work with iFHP on international comparisons of health care price was featured in a Vox article.   America’s health care costs problem, explained in 4 charts - Vox America’s health care prices problem, in four charts. https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2019/12/17/21024614/us-health-care-costs-medical-prices
Dec
09

The Wall Street Journal: White House Applauds Bipartisan Congressional Deal to Curb Surprise Medical Bills

HCCI's work on out-of-network billing was cited in a Wall Street Journal article on a congressional deal to curb surprise billing.  From the article:  "In surprise bills, patients can be charged nondiscounted rates from out-of-network providers. An insurance plan may not cover that bill, or may pay part of the cost at a lower rate than the doctor charges. Ending such bills has been ...
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Nov
27

HCCI Recognized as a Shortlistee at the Information is Beautiful Awards Ceremony

The Health Care Cost Institute (HCCI) was thrilled to make the shortlist for the Kantar Information is Beautiful Awards in the Humanitarian category. Information is Beautiful celebrates excellence and beauty in data visualizations, infographics, interactives, and information art – and the work it features serves as inspiration to HCCI. Over the past year, with support from the Robert Wood Johnson ...
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Nov
25

Health Affairs: Surprise Bills, Benchmarks, And The Problem Of Indexation

​HCCI data was cited in a Health Affairs blog article on surprise billing.   From the Article: "Over the past year, the congressional debate over surprise billing has converged on two policy options to resolve out-of-network payments—1) a simple benchmark, in which a health plan pays out-of-network providers the median rate agreed with local in-network providers in the same specialty, or...
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Nov
22

Vox: Her son died after insurers resisted covering drug rehab. Now she's taking them to court.

HCCI data was used in an article about the cost of substance use disorder rehab.   From the article: "Insurers do seem to be paying more for addiction care than they used to. According to the Health Care Cost Institute, commercial insurers spent a little more than $17,000 on the average patient with a substance use disorder in 2017, up from nearly $13,500 in 2008. That's likely due in pa...
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Nov
19

Health Affairs: Private Equity and Powerful Physician Groups Raise Another Distraction

HCCI data on market concentration was mentioned in a Health Affairs blog post. From the article: "Before we even get into the merits and effects of Congress' fix for surprise billing, it's worth noting that the status quo is bad for networks. Most markets—particularly in urban areas—are highly concentrated, giving providers such as hospitals and specialists a great deal of market power. The Health...
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Nov
12

Health Affairs: Stop Blaming The Victim: The Case For Systemic Health System Transparency

In HCCI's publication in Health Affairs Blog, we examine the case for systemic health system transparency and directing changes towards key stakeholders.  From the article: "Health care costs strain the budgets of families, businesses, and governments, leaving less room for other spending and forcing painful tradeoffs. In 2017, the United States spent $3.5 trillion on health care - ...
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Nov
11

HCCI and Blue Health Intelligence® Announce Major New Data Sharing Partnership

Addition of Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies' data will expand nation's leading resource for understanding health care cost trends.  CHICAGO (November 12, 2019) – The Health Care Cost Institute (HCCI) and Blue Health Intelligence® (BHI®) announced today a multi-year data partnership, significantly expanding HCCI's data resources and bolstering its ability to provide research insights to a...
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Nov
07

Boston Globe: Senate leaders to offer antidote for high drug costs

HCCI's work on insulin pricing was cited in a Boston Globe article.  From the article:  "Following similar efforts in Colorado and Minnesota, the Senate bill also targets the costs of insulin, a commonly used drug that has become increasingly unaffordable for many patients. On average, the price of all types of insulin roughly doubled between 2012 and 2016, according to the Washington-ba...
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Oct
31

NPR and Kaiser Health News: A Woman's Grief Led To A Mental Health Crisis And A $21,634 Hospital Bill

HCCI data was cited in an NPR/KHN Bill of the Month story.  From the article:  "Hospitals generally charge uninsured people much more than they charge people who have insurance. A 2017 report from the Health Care Cost Institute showed that the average negotiated price of an acute mental health admission was $9,293 for a commercially insured patient who stayed, on average, for a week. Tha...
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