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economics medical

I have an MRI appointment! and more on health costs

At long last I am going to have an MRI. My doctor wasn’t getting anywhere with the insurance company, so he wanted to arrange another visit to get a more particular differential to present to them. Of course, that meant that there was going to be another charge for a visit, plus probably more lab work etc. There wasn’t much difference between what the insurance company was going to pay (if they agreed to it) and what I’d pay out of pocket in the first place. When you added another doctor’s visit just to get the insurance to cover it, I was going to end up paying more. So I said screw it and scheduled one.

Just google for “low price MRI” and you’ll pull up a bunch of sites to help you find a good price. It turns out that AZ and Vegas have some of the lowest prices. At $350 for an MRI without contrast, it might make sense to fly out there to get one if you need a bunch done.

Mine cost me $800 because I needed one with and without contrast. That’s still pretty good, and still the same or less than using my doctor’s usual place with my insurance. It pays to shop around! Now if only the insurance companies would pick up on this we might get somewhere on prices…

Here’s a website and blog fighting the fight for lower cost medical care. It’s called Out of Pocket, and I hope many more pop up like it!

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