U.S. News top hospitals cost Medicare less than the national average

Kaiser Health News found that the hospitals that make up the U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Hospitals” cost Medicare 1% less than the national average. 

For the analysis, Kaiser Health News examined Medicare data for the hospitals that made the U.S News & World Report “Honor Roll”.  (Johns Hopkins in Baltimore was omitted because Medicare didn’t provide figures for Maryland hospitals) 

Key findings:

  • As a group, the average cost to Medicare for a patient at a U.S. News top hospital was $17,808, or 1 percent below the national median spending of $17,988.
  • The least expensive of these hospitals had patients who, on average, cost Medicare 5 percent below the median.
  • The most expensive hospital had patients who, on average, cost Medicare 3 percent above the median.
  • None were outliers among the 3,346 hospitals that Medicare evaluated.

(Sources: Kaiser Health News, http://capsules.kaiserhealthnews.org/, May 14, 2012; The Advisory Board Daily Briefing, http://advisory.com, May 21, 2012)