How Much Do Hospitals Cost Shift? A Review of the Evidence | HCFO

Policymakers should view with a degree of skepticism most hospital and insurance industry claims of inevitable, large-scale cost shifting. Although some cost shifting may result from changes in public payment policy, it is just one of many possible effects. Moreover, changes in the balance of market power between hospitals and health care plans also significantly affect private prices. Since they may increase hospitals’ market power, provisions of the new health reform law that may encourage greater provider integration and consolidation should be implemented with caution.

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