News & Updates

March 25, 2024

Hospitals Are Adding Billions in ‘Facility’ Fees for Routine Care – Wall Street Journal, March 25, 2024

Tim Ebel’s visit with an ear, nose and throat specialist at an Ohio clinic last October came to $348. At the same time, he got a second bill for $645.

The hospital system that owns the Avon, Ohio, clinic had charged him separately for use of the office where he met his physician. It is what is known as a facility fee, which included overhead for the system’s hospitals though Ebel hadn’t set foot in one.

His wife, Kelly Ebel, tried to get the system, University Hospitals, to waive or mark down the fee. It refused.

“When they do something like this, to her and I, it’s not fair,” Tim Ebel said. “This is not how you bring down medical costs in this country.”

Hospitals are adding billions of dollars in facility fees to medical bills for routine care in outpatient centers they own. Once an annoyance, the fees are now pervasive, and in some places they are becoming nearly impossible to avoid, data compiled for The Wall Street Journal show. The fees are spreading as hospitals press on with acquisitions, snapping up medical groups and tacking on the additional charges.

Click here to see the full article on the Wall Street Journal website.