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Here’s a first: January hospital prices lower than a year ago
Modern Healthcare

The prices that health insurers paid to acute-care hospitals declined in January compared with the same month a year ago, a first since federal officials began to collect such data. Public sector and private payer efforts to push down costs could explain the drop, experts said.

In aggregate, the price of acute-care hospital care for Medicare, Medicaid, private insurers and other payers — including the uninsured — declined 0.1% last month from January 2014. The new federal data, which is preliminary and may be revised, reported a 2.9% drop in Medicare rates for hospital care during the period and the weakest 12-month price growth, 1.6%, among private health plans and other payers since July 1998. Medicaid prices were nearly flat, declining 0.1%.

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