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Report Finds Hospital Mergers Drive Up Health Care Prices
KQED Radio

A report released Wednesday says hospital mergers are the biggest single factor driving up health care prices. The national study by San Francisco-based Catalyst for Payment Reform found a single Bay Area hospital merger, the 1999 consolidation of Summit and Alta Bates in the East Bay, increased prices by nearly 40 percent in just two years.

Study co-author Suzanne DelBanco said hospital chains have more sway over prices.