Hospitals to start posting prices online January 1

On Jan. 1, hospitals around the country will have to post their prices online.

It will allow people to see how much standard services are under the Affordable Care Act. The goal of this new federal law is to provide pricing transparency in the health care system.

Unfortunately, the listed amounts won’t be exactly what you see on the bill. Those are some of the concerns that local hospitals have.

According to statements Cone Health and Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center released, they support the transparency. They also add that pricing is very complex and what someone pays will largely depend on a person’s specific health plan.

While the new rule will encourage competition among providers, a Cone Health spokesperson said patients should consider quality of care during their selection.

“I would always choose quality but I know for a lot of people, it’s just the care that they can get has to be good enough,” said Ellen Trastelis, a Greensboro resident.

“Some people have really high deductible plans and their insurance is more about catastrophic illness, so they can’t afford what seems like a pretty basic procedure sometimes,” said Eric Duehring, a Greensboro resident. “If they have a choice to do something that’s almost as effective but a lot less expensive, they might choose that.”

With health care and insurance being a touchy subject, many people feel like these changes in the health care system will have a positive effect.

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