Navigation Links
Doctors Order Fewer Lab Tests When They Know the Cost
Date:4/16/2013

TUESDAY, April 16 (HealthDay News) -- When doctors know what hospitals charge for certain lab tests, they order far fewer of them or look for cheaper alternatives, a new study finds.

Currently, hospitals typically keep doctors and patients in the dark about the prices of medical services, which contributes to the enormous cost of health care in the United States, according to the researchers.

Their six-month study looked at the use of 62 diagnostic blood tests frequently ordered for patients at the Johns Hopkins Hospital, in Baltimore. Doctors in one group were given the cost of each of the tests while doctors in another group were not provided with that information.

The group of doctors who knew the prices ordered nearly 9 percent fewer lab tests, which saved more than $400,000 over the study period, according to the study appearing April 15 in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine.

There was a 6 percent increase in the number of tests ordered by the group of doctors who did not know the prices.

"We generally don't make decisions based on what is cost-effective or what is known to be absolutely necessary for our patients, but knowing the cost of things appears to make us more thoughtful about what we think might be best for their health," study leader Dr. Leonard Feldman, an assistant professor of medicine at Johns Hopkins, said in a hospital news release.

"There's a lot of waste in medicine because we don't have a sense of the costs of much of what we do," he added.

Feldman said the findings offer "evidence that presenting providers with associated test fees as they order is a simple and unobtrusive way to alter behavior. In the end, we ordered fewer tests, saved money and saved patients from extra needle sticks without any negative outcomes."

Many of the savings seen in the study were the result of comparison shopping. For example, it cost $15.44 for a comprehensive metabolic panel, a blood test that checks fluid and electrolyte status, kidney and liver function, blood sugar levels, and response to various medications. A basic metabolic panel checks many of the same things but cost $3.08.

During the six-month study, the number of comprehensive metabolic panel tests ordered by doctors who knew the price fell by about 8,900, while the number of basic metabolic panels grew by about the same number.

That shift alone saved more than $27,000 over the study period, the researchers said.

More information

The U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality advises patients on asking questions about medical tests.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: Johns Hopkins Medicine, news release, April 15, 2013


'/>"/>
Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Study finds doctors have exaggerated fears when starting patients on insulin
2. Doctors Detail High Costs of Fighting Malpractice Claims
3. Callahan honored for improving older adults health in their doctors offices
4. Doctors Urge Routine Skin Screenings
5. Doctors Restore Some Hand Function to Quadriplegic Patient
6. Men Can Still Ask for PSA Test, and Some Should, Doctors Say
7. Female Doctors Earn Less Than Male Counterparts: Study
8. Male doctors make $12K more per year than female doctors
9. Is it constitutional for states to regulate pharmaceutical gifts and meals to doctors?
10. Doctors cite concern for patients, colleagues top motives for working sick
11. Hospitals communication during residency matching may put stress on OB-GYN doctors-in-training
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Doctors Order Fewer Lab Tests When They Know the Cost
(Date:5/29/2016)... Cary, North Carolina (PRWEB) , ... May 29, 2016 , ... ... KP-400L wide jaw clipper that has been available via Amazon.com. This new ... who have thick nails. , The jaw opening is approximately 4mm and the actual ...
(Date:5/29/2016)... ... May 29, 2016 , ... "With 30 unique self-animating ... user control the style of their project," said Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel ... web-themed intros created exclusively for use in Final Cut Pro X. Pixel Film Studios’ ...
(Date:5/28/2016)... ... 2016 , ... "Color Grading media can be time consuming but with FCPX ... said Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , With the FCPX ... color grades to their footage. A LUT is a Lookup Table that contains a ...
(Date:5/28/2016)... ... ... and a half of planning the Multiple Pathways of Recovery Conference , CCAR is ... was held May 2 -4, 2016 at the Mystic Marriott Hotel & Spa . ... many pathways individuals use to get into and sustain their recovery. Pathways of recovery ...
(Date:5/27/2016)... Angeles, CA (PRWEB) , ... May 27, 2016 , ... ... of Health, so it is not surprising that bariatric surgery has received increased attention ... Business Journal explains. Of course, when it comes to weight loss, most people are ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/30/2016)... India , May 30, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... market research report "Healthcare Biometrics Market by ... (Signature, Voice)), Multifactor, Multimodal), Application (Workforce Management), ... Forecast to 2021", published by MarketsandMarkets, the ... Million by 2021 from USD 1,182.6 Million ...
(Date:5/30/2016)... 2016 The global  parenteral ... billion by 2024, according to a new report ... rate, the growing malnutrition coupled with the prevalence ... tract diseases are expected to boost the market ... http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20150105/723757 ) , The ...
(Date:5/30/2016)... 30, 2016 - DCGI grants limited approval ... Buerger,s disease - Stempeucel® becomes 5th off-the-shelf Stem cell ... world - Buerger,s Disease (also known as Thromboangiitis Obliterans) ... and Globally - Prevalence of Buerger,s Disease is ... 2 per 10,000 persons in the European Community & ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: