Mansell, Engel & Cole

Variability of health care costs underscored in this story

Oklahoma residents doing their homework prior to making a major consumer decision duly focus on comparative shopping.

To wit: A careful would-be buyer doesn’t simply purchase a new car from a local dealer without first checking to see if there are nearby competitors selling the same model. Price is of course a motivating factor, and knowledge is power.

That adage is a key mantra in most consumer decisions, of course.

But not all. A recent CBS News article notes that, while price variability is generally something that most American consumers can probe and intelligibly act upon, the health care realm stands out as a marked exception.

There is no dearth of vetted evidence establishing that. A given medication can cost 10 times more money at one pharmacy than at another, and the same operation can come with dramatically different price tags at various surgical centers.

It is that sheer variability – with the specifics unknown to most consumers and nearly impossible to unmask – that the above-cited article stresses.

One health economist provides a relevant comment concerning one man’s lengthy journey to an Oklahoma surgery center after having his health claim denied by an insurer. His operation ultimately cost him about 10% of what hospitals were quoting him for the procedure back in his home state.

That commentator states that the story spotlights “how outrageously variable everything in U.S. health care really is.”

We certainly understand the challenges at Mansell, Engel & Cole, especially when policyholders’ frustrations are linked with insurance delay or denial (sometimes in bad faith). The proven legal team at our long-established Oklahoma City insurance law firm provides diligent and knowledgeable help to individuals and families seeking to secure fair outcomes in matters involving their insurance carriers.

We welcome contacts to the firm concerning any claim-tied questions or concerns.

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