Same procedure, huge cost difference at hospitals nationwide - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Same procedure, huge cost difference at hospitals nationwide

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How much would it cost you to get treated at the hospital for heart failure? Well, it depends on where you go.

If you needed to be shocked and went to a Cape Girardeau hospital, it would cost $33,000 to $52,000.

The bill for the same procedure in Marion would be around $51,000.

And in Paducah, you can expect to pay nearly $20,000.

Those numbers put together by the federal centers for Medicare and Medicaid service

But, the agency says it expects a range in prices because different hospitals use different methods to heal.

Would you ever shop for the best medical treatment?

John Kearbey did, and he says it paid off.

"I got a comparison with memorial hospital here in Carbondale, I had to get a hernia repair," Kearbey said. "And with the hernia repair the expenses were a little bit higher."

So, Kearbey shopped around for the best deal.

"It's just like buying a car in a sense, ya know?" Kearbey said.  "You're not going to take the first deal they offer you on the table."

What he found was a $15,000 difference for the same treatment just a few hours away in St. Louis.

Kearbey says it was worth the commute.

"I was just blown away at the difference of the cost," he said.

So what's more important? The price you pay or the treatment you get?

For some, it's all about the cost.

"I would travel the extra few hours if it was cheaper," said Michael Sanders.

But others are on the fence as to what should come first.

"I would go where the cheapest price is if I was allowed to shop," said Jerry Jackson. "But, I'd also want the best care, ya know, for what I was receiving."

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