(WWBT) - Excluding the various types of skin cancer, colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer diagnosis in the U.S., with nearly 100,000 new cases to be diagnosed this year.
Colonoscopies are recommended once you turn 50 years old. It's a procedure you should have done, but you should also shop around to get the best value for your money.
The procedure enables a doctor to see inside your colon to check for abnormalities.
Insurance is required to cover colonoscopies for colorectal cancer screening under the Affordable Care Act, but you may still have to pay something out of pocket depending on your insurance plan.
The price of a colonoscopy can vary from $1,000 to $5,000 out-of-pocket. In Virginia, the average cost with no biopsy at an ambulatory surgery center is 1,338,14. At a hospital, the average cost is $2,818.74.
Healthcare Blue Book CEO Jeff Rice, a free website that helps you find out the fair price of a procedure, says it's up to you to do your homework and call around to find the best place.
"Many patients that don't do their homework, they're going to end paying $3,000 or more for their colonoscopy," Rice said. "Just because they didn't take the time to work with their doctor to go to a facility that offered a good value."
Always ask the price of a procedure when it's not an emergency and you have time to find a facility.
If you have insurance, make sure it's "in-network" but continue to ask for the pricing. And those without insurance should always ask the "cash" price.
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