California Hospital Prices on the Rise, Particularly in Bay Area

The typical price of an inpatient stay in a California hospital was $20,858 in 2009, up from $15,063 in 2005, and hospitals in the state received a 37 percent increase in commercial revenue during the same time period, according to a San Jose Mercury News report.

Costs are comparatively high in the Bay Area. Inpatient stays in Santa Clara County, for example, are 65 percent higher than the state average, according to the report.

Some hospital critics say that big systems such as Sacramento, Calif.-based Sutter Health — which charges 37 percent more than the state average — use their clout to negotiate higher prices. Sutter, however, argues that its rates are fair.

Read the San Jose Mercury News report on California hospital prices.

Read previous coverage on California hospitals:

- California's Plumas District Hospital Names Interim CEO

Nurses Begin Three-Day Strike at Children's Hospital Oakland

California's Prime Healthcare Services Says Union Instigated Fraud Probe

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