Using Medicare to Benchmark Healthcare Prices: Too Much, Too Little or Just Right?

Friday, February 28, 2020 | 2:00pm - 3:00pm


Date & Location

Fri, Feb 28, 2020 | 2:00pm to 3:00pm

Host Organization

Altarum’s Healthcare Value Hub

Event Contact

Tad Lee
(202) 776-5126

There is a strong consensus that the primary driver of high and rising healthcare spending in the United States is unit prices—the individual prices associated with any product or service like a medication or a medical procedure. Moreover, research shows that prices may not reflect the underlying cost to provide healthcare services, particularly prices paid by commercial health insurance which covers almost 60 percent of the U.S. population. There are many approaches to address excessive prices but all rest on establishing what a fair price would look like, sometimes known as a “benchmark price” or “reference price.” The prices paid by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) for Medicare beneficiaries is one of the most common standards, not only in use today but a key component of many universal coverage proposals.  

This webinar will explore whether or not Medicare’s approach to setting prices for services like hospitals and specialists, or products like drugs, can be used by other payers to address our high unit price problem, as well as any unintended consequences to be aware of.