A new study from the Employee Benefit Research Institute’s Center for Research on Health Benefits Innovation finds that employers and workers would collectively save $14.1 billion annually if price differentials between hospital outpatient departments (HOPDs) and physician offices (POs) were eliminated for all physician-administered outpatient drugs (PAODs). On average, plan payments to HOPDs are triple what plan payments are to POs for the same unit of medication.
“Location, Location, Location: Spending Differences for Physician-Administered Outpatient Medications by Site of Treatment” finds that just over one-half of PAODs are administered in HOPDs. One-third are administered in a PO, and the remainder are received in other settings, such as a patient’s home. The study finds the savings would be $110.03 for all PAODs if price differentials between HOPDs and POs were eliminated.