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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The price of a colonoscopy tops $5,000 on average at some of the priciest hospitals, compared to about $1,700 on average elsewhere in America, according to a new study published in Health Affairs.

What they're saying: "High service prices result in high out-of-pocket expenditure for commercially insured patients, especially those enrolled in high-deductible health plans, and raise health plan premiums for the beneficiaries," the researchers wrote.

Details: Using the price transparency database compiled by Turquoise Health, researchers from Michigan State University and Johns Hopkins found only about a quarter of the nation's general acute care hospitals — 1,225 in all — disclosed commercial negotiated prices for colonoscopies as of July 2021.

  • Among that group, the top 10% of hospitals had prices of at least $3,677. That's about 4.6 times the national average Medicare reimbursement rate of $793.
  • At the highest-price hospital, a colonoscopy cost $27,679.
  • Among the remaining 90% of hospitals, or 1,103, the median commercial negotiated price for a colonoscopy ranged from $44 to $3,676.

Go deeper

Minnesota National Guard to assist with hospital staffing shortages

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz on April 19. Photo: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

Gov. Tim Walz (D) announced Friday that he'll put the Minnesota National Guard on alert to help ease staffing shortages at hospitals and care facilities due to the rise in COVID-19 cases among unvaccinated residents in the state.

Driving the news: Over 400 Minnesota patients are currently waiting for beds to open up at other care centers as hospitals across the state have reported that they're at or close to reaching capacity, AP reports.

This is what a profit margin squeeze looks like

Expand chart
Data: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics; Chart: Jared Whalen/Axios

Two inflation indexes out this week, taken together, show how companies’ margins are getting squeezed.

Why it matters: Corporate earnings growth, while still historically high, is receding from record second-quarter levels. Margins will be a huge focus during Q3 earnings calls this month.

Updated 1 hour ago - World

Brazil senators vote to recommend criminal charges for Bolsonaro

Brazilian senators vote on probe into President Bolsonaro's handling of pandemic. Photo: Gustavo Minas/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A Brazilian Senate committee Tuesday voted to approve a report recommending President Jair Bolsonaro be charged with a raft of criminal indictments, including crimes against humanity over his response to the COVID-19 pandemic, per AP.

Why it matters: Bolsonaro has become the face of a right-wing approach to the pandemic that includes repudiating vaccines and masks and resisting lockdowns and other mitigation measures. The Senate report holds him personally responsible for half of the country's 600,000 deaths.