Once again a new survey shows Miami has by far the highest healthcare costs in the nation.
A study by Kaiser Health News of the latest available Medicare data shows that the costs of the average Miami senior’s healthcare beats out any area of the country.
The Miami senior averaged $18,199 in 2008, according to the report. That’s twice the national average. Adjusted for higher local wages and other factors, the Miami cost is $10,145 – 35 percent higher than the national average.
McAllen, Texas, which has occasionally rivaled Miami in high costs, showed an average of $14,940 in actual costs in the latest survey.
Fort Lauderdale came in at $11,677 (128 percent of national average) for actual costs and $9,016 (120 percent) for adjusted costs.
For years, the Dartmouth Atlas research group has been analyzing why Miami’s costs are so much higher than elsewhere, even when adjusted for severity of illness and other factors. Their findings have shown that a major contributor appears to be the large number of physician specialists in the area, a situation that tends to lead to more visits to doctors and more diagnostic tests. The large number of hospital beds in the area may also drive up usage, Dartmouth has found.
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