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Hospital costs nearly double in decade

October 18, 2012

The cost of an average hospital stay in the U.S. nearly doubled in a decade. Charges are lower overseas, despite longer stays.

The cost of the average American hospital stay nearly doubled from 2000 to 2010 while average stay length declined. The decade was a period of low inflation, but some sectors of the economy didn’t get the memo. Charges for a hospitalization soared from an average $17,390 in 2000 to $33,079 in 2010. In the U.S. we spend almost three times as much on a hospital stay as other industrialized countries, even though their average stay tends to be longer.

If you’re interested in what specific procedures cost in the U.S. compared to other industrialized nations (OECD averages), click to see today’s infographic in full. Then inject yourself into today’s discussion below. Why do you think U.S. hospital costs rose so far, so fast? Are you happy with our medical system as it is?