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Researchers: Arizona hospital’s markups are among highest in US

PHOENIX — An Arizona medical center was among the 50 U.S. hospitals that charge the most for their services, according to a medical journal study.

The June issue of Health Affairs listed Western Arizona Regional Medical Center in Bullhead City as No. 9. The data was based on 2012 figures. MedicalXpress.Com published the complete list.

All the hospitals were charging an average of 10 times the rates that Medicare will cover.

Researchers Gerard F. Anderson of Johns Hopkins and Ge Bai of Washington and Lee University concluded that government officials — federal and state — “may want to consider limitations on the charge-to-cost ratio, some form of all-payer rate setting, or mandated price disclosure to regulate hospital markups.”

Twenty of the hospitals were in Florida.

Most states don’t put a cap on what hospitals charge for services.

Some for-profit hospitals criticized the study, saying it did not account for
the discounts and billions in charity care that they give low-income patients.

The western Arizona hospital has 90 beds.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.