Medicare reimbursements higher for physicians integrated with hospitals, study finds

Medicare reimbursement for physician services were an average $114,000 higher per physician per year when billed by hospitals rather than by independent physician practices from 2010 to 2016, according to a study recently published in Health Services Research.

Researchers analyzed national Medicare claims data from 2010 to 2016 and calculated the disparity between Medicare reimbursement for practices under hospital versus physician ownership, adjusting for region, market concentration and time effects.

The study found that surgeons' reimbursements would increase by 224 percent if they integrated their practice into a hospital; physicians' reimbursements would increase by 78 percent; and medical specialists' reimbursements would increase by 74 percent.

 

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