A recent survey reported that a single day in a hospital in the U.S. costs, on average, $1,514 (up to as much as $12,537), while in France it costs $853.
An appendectomy in the U.S.—including physician and hospital bills—costs $8,156 on average (up to as much as $29,426). The same procedure in France costs $4,463.
Hip replacement surgery costs an average of $25,061 (up to $87,987) in the U.S., but just $10,927 in France.
Median price for routine heart bypass surgery in the U.S. is $46,547 (up to $61,649). In France the average cost is $22,844.
A routine doctor's visit in the U.S. costs an average $95 (up to as much as $176). In France, though, you'll pay just $30.
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And why do prices vary so greatly in the U.S.? Because they're mostly paid through insurance claims, and prices are negotiated by insurance companies. You pay what they say you'll pay. The prices you pay can vary greatly from region to region, from market to market. And don't be fooled into thinking you're paying more for quality for a name-brand hospital. Because that's not necessarily the case.
(By the way, if you live in a U.S. city that's experienced a lot of hospital mergers, you're probably paying more than you should be…that's the nature of monopolistic pricing.)
In other words, it can pay to move overseas or to shop around internationally for your health care. You'll see some huge savings, as the pricing examples I've just given for the U.S. and France clearly show.