Joe Cantlupe, for HealthLeaders Media
When the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office released a recent report sharply critical of the state’s healthcare costs, one of the office’s most often used words was “driver”—referring to hidden forces steering potentially out of control expenses.
Reacting to the AG’s decision, health insurers’ major lobby in Washington blames hospital consolidation as an often ignored reason for the soaring price of healthcare.
“The data shows that [hospital consolidation] has increased healthcare costs—with a higher price for healthcare services,” says Robert Zirkelbach, spokesman for the America’s Health Insurance Plans. “It’s something that hasn’t been paid attention to. It’s certainly something we’re looking at.”