“Hospitals and health care companies often flood email inboxes and wire services with press releases that tout new procedures or devices. The marketing intent is clear — they want to attract patients to their facilities or get the word out on their new technology.
The one thing they don’t talk about: the price.
Why it matters: Adopting new technologies contributes a lot to the growth of health care spending. To battle that growth, the health care industry promotes price transparency as a way to encourage competition and lower spending. However, most hospitals and providers really don’t embrace price transparency, and continue to advertise the latest procedures with seemingly little regard for costs.
The Sharp Coronado Hospital case: This past July, Sharp Coronado Hospital in California issued a press release that proclaimed it was the “first hospital in the U.S. to perform a general surgery procedure using the new da Vinci X Robotic Surgical System,” which is made by Intuitive Surgical. A local NBC affiliate ran with the story, which could be mistaken for a rewritten press release.
Many other hospital systems have boasted about having Intuitive Surgical’s robots, which has led to a surgical arms race over the past decade.”