Average cost of hospital visit went up 36% over decade, data shows

Costs in some states went up even higher
Posted at 4:17 PM, May 28, 2020

There's new concern about medical costs because of the coronavirus.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, we were already seeing hospital costs rising.

Insurance comparison website Quote Wizard looked at a decade of data and it determined the average cost of a hospital visit went up 36% to more than $2,300 a day. In some states, the increase was higher.

“Why that matters right now during COVID-19 is obviously there is a stress on the healthcare system with people being sick from coronavirus but also significant numbers of people losing their jobs,” said Adam Johnson, a Quote Wizard analyst. “Millions of Americans losing their jobs and when they're losing their jobs, they're losing their employer sponsored health insurance.”

Rising hospital costs are due in part to uninsured and underinsured patients that receive care. However, there's another significant contributor that could be easier to correct.

“In other countries where health care systems are a little more uniform, the administrative aspect is much lower, 1 to 3% of total healthcare costs, but in the United States, that’s around 8%,” said Johnson.

Hospitals did get some emergency relief funding under the CARES Act and other stimulus bills. That will help offset some of the extra COVID-care debt, but only time will tell how the crisis will impact future costs.