Baton Rouge General Launches New Price Estimator Tool for Patients

BATON ROUGE, La. – Baton Rouge General (BRG) is helping take the guesswork out of potential surgeries and services for patients with its new online Price Estimator tool. The user-friendly, easy-to-understand tool allows users to get an accurate estimate for a service before scheduling, based on their specific benefits through their insurance plans.

“Billing in healthcare is confusing and frustrating, and it’s extremely difficult to compare prices between hospitals and other healthcare providers,” said Edgardo Tenreiro, BRG’s President and CEO. “Our Price Estimator tool is one of several steps we will take over time to lead in price transparency. We want patients to know their out-of-pocket expenses ahead of time, but more importantly, we want patients to be able to compare actual procedure costs when they choose BRG versus other hospitals in the region.”

The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) found that:

  • 60% of consumers requested estimated out-of-pocket costs before a visit
  • Of that 60%, 51% struggled to get that information
  • 1 in 3 hospitals don’t have basic price estimation tools

In the past, hospitals were only required to publicly list their standard charges and/or policies upon request. But last year, CMS finalized its price transparency rule, which will go into effect in January 2021.

The rule aims to equip consumers with more transparent pricing data and lower healthcare costs by allowing them to compare prices and shop around. Hospitals will be required to publicly post standard charges for services via an online, searchable platform.

BRG’s Price Estimator tool includes more than 300 services and multiple ways to search – by service name, like “MRI” – or by category, like surgery, radiology/imaging, cardiology or lab services. After inputting basic information and insurance status, the tool will generate an estimate for your out-of-pocket costs.

In a typical year, BRG’s patient billing team handles approximately 17,000 estimates over the phone. The new online tool streamlines the process and will encourage more people to check on potential costs ahead of time, allowing them to make more informed choices about their health care.

For more information, click here.

About Baton Rouge General Medical Center
Baton Rouge General Medical Center is the area’s first community hospital with 588 licensed beds between two campuses. Baton Rouge General opened its doors in 1900, and has provided the Greater Baton Rouge community with high-quality healthcare for generations. An accredited teaching hospital since 1991, Baton Rouge General serves as an affiliate of Tulane University School of Medicine, and offers other medical education programs, including a School of Nursing, School of Radiologic Technology, Family Medicine Residency Program, Internal Medicine Residency Program, and Sports Medicine Fellowship Program. For more information, visit BRGeneral.org, find us on Facebook at Facebook.com/BatonRougeGeneral and follow us on Twitter at @BRGeneral.

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