Surgery Pricing vs. Premiums

Surgery Pricing vs. Premiums

Hello, Dr. Keith Smith with you. Surgery Center of Oklahoma. Thank you for joining me.

Patients continue to stream into our facility from states outside of Oklahoma, basically refugees from their local price gougers. I always ask patients, “what was your next best price?” Wanting to know, what was the price that drove them here…led them to travel all this way. The answer is always the same. It seems to be six to ten times whatever the amount is we have listed online.

Recently an uninsured patient, when I asked that question, provided the most interesting answer that I thought I would pass along. I asked him “what was his next best price”, and he said, “twenty months premiums…you only cost me two months premiums.” It seems this patient had been insured by a carrier that was charging him $1,500 a month. He was paying $18,000 a year for his coverage, and that didn’t even take into account his exposure to a large deductible. We charged him about $3,000 for his hernia repair, so he paid us two months in premiums. He said, “why would I want to buy six hernia’s when all I needed was one?”

I’ve thought about changing all of our prices online, or at least adding a column, to show how many months premiums it would take to buy the various procedures we have listed online, but I thought I’d made this blog instead.

Thank you. We’ll see you next time.