Frequently Asked Questions

A growing number of consumers are taking on greater financial responsibility for their health care needs and in turn need information that will allow them to make informed health care decisions. It is important that patients consider price and quality when making health care decisions. Florida hospitals have long-supported transparency in health care financing and have been reporting financial and quality data to the state and federal government for years. However, many don’t know about the various ways to access this data.

In response, FHA launched the Mission to Care website, which features greater detail about hospital price and quality data, hospital information and reports. The site also includes tools and resources to guide patients before, during and after their hospital stay.

Prices for the 50 most common medical conditions or procedures displayed include the average price charged by the hospital to your insurance company (indicated as “Avg. Charge”), as well as the average payment received by the hospital from the insurance company (indicated as “Avg. Pay”).

The charges represent the price for each service or procedure after the hospital has allocated all costs on a pro rata basis to each of those services and procedures.

The amount paid includes the average total price paid, including the portion covered by the insurance company and the portion paid out-of-pocket by the patient for co-pays, co-insurance or deductibles.

The number of discharges per hospital is also indicated. This is the number of patients treated per year. This information is important because it illustrates how many times this procedure has been done in a hospital.

All averages include commercial-insurance charges only. This means an insurance company pays the hospital for services to patients who have employer-based, or individual, insurance.

Rates listed on this site are average total charges paid, which includes payments by the insurance company and out-of-pocket payments by the patient who received the care. Each health plan’s negotiated rates may be different, and individual out-of-pocket costs will vary.

If you have health insurance, the best source for more information on how much you can expect to pay is your insurance company. Use average payments indicated on this site to discuss your own co-pays, co-insurance and deductibles with your insurance company. Visit your health insurer’s website or look for customer service phone numbers on your insurance card to learn more.

If you do not have health insurance, the best source for more information is your hospital. Many hospitals have coordinators available to start working with patients before they receive services. They conduct interviews, get patients’ financial history, and offer the patient financial assistance and a financial plan that fits within the patient’s own budget. Contact your hospital and physician before your procedure if you have any questions about what to expect.

Providing the safest possible care and helping patients return to health is the top priority for Florida hospitals. Each day hospitals strive to continuously improve care.

Hospitals report information on quality and safety to state and Federal agencies, and those results have been compiled on this site. Search for information on rates of C-sections, rates of death after certain procedures, rates of patients returning to the hospital for unexpected additional care, emergency department wait times, whether recommended treatments were given to patients treated for heart attack and heart failure, rates of infections, use of antibiotics for certain conditions and other results.

These results provide a snapshot into the hospital’s quality and safety. It’s important to note that these results do not always factor in how sick the patient was at the time of their care, which places them at higher risk of having a complication. And measuring compliance with recommended treatment does not factor in the physician’s individual discretion – there could be times that the physician believes the recommended care is not the best option for the individual patient’s own condition. Finally, these measures cannot factor in individual differences in skill and experience of physicians and other caregivers at the same hospital.

Although these quality measures may be imperfect, they can help you have a conversation with your own physician and your hospital about the best treatment options for you.

The website does include quality ratings for imaging (i.e. MRI, x-rays), emergency departments and various outpatient treatments performed in hospital settings. It does not include pricing information for outpatient procedures that are performed outside of the hospital since publicly available data is limited.  Additionally, it is not possible to provide estimated payments for the non-hospital providers since they are not required to publicly report financial data.

To ensure accuracy when displaying information on averages, charge, payment and length of stay are only shown for hospitals with at least five cases of any given procedure. Also, the quality measures only reflect adult populations. Some measures may not appear for specialty hospitals such as children’s hospitals.

Programs are in place to help patients when they can’t afford the cost of their care. Speak with your hospital to find the right resources. If you can’t afford insurance, you may be eligible for discounts or government-supported insurance programs. Hospitals often provide free or reduced-cost care to patients most in need. View a list of hospital billing/pricing resource web pages.

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