Blood tests cost

Blood tests can measure cells, lipids, proteins, sugars, hormones, tumor markers and other blood components. They are used to diagnose and treat of many diseases including diabetes, high cholesterol, thyroid disease and cancer.Typical costs:
  • CostHelper readers with insurance report out-of-pocket costs of $283-$675 for blood tests, with an average of $432; total billed costs were $312-$1,200 (averaging $755), with the insurance either paying or discounting the total cost by $29-$525.
  • For patients covered by health insurance, out-of-pocket costs for blood work typically consist of a copay ranging from nothing to $30 or more, or coinsurance of 10%-50% or more; deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums will apply.
  • Blood tests are often covered by health insurance for preventive, diagnostic or treatment purposes, but coverage depends on the individual case and the terms of the health insurance plan.
  • CostHelper readers without health insurance report total costs of $700-$2,589, averaging $1,543. For patients not covered by health insurance, total costs can be $100-$3,000 or more, depending on the number and type of tests ordered; the cost of any doctor visits to order and interpret the tests; and whether the tests are done on an emergency basis.
  • Routine blood work done as part of an annual physical or a new patient exam can cost $100-$1,000 or more. Often ordered in connection with an annual physical, a complete blood count (CBC) test alone can cost $10-$150 or more.
  • Depending on the patient’s symptoms, doctors typically order multiple tests to check for a number of conditions; comprehensive panels of tests can cost $80-$1,500 or more, and combining several testing packages can bring total costs to $1,500-$2,700 or more.

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What should be included:
  • Before any blood test, the patient typically will be given instructions to follow, such as fasting for a certain number of hours. The medical provider then draws blood and sends it to a laboratory for analysis. Results usually are provided to the patient and/or their doctor within a few days to a week.
  • The National Institutes of Health lists types of common blood tests[1] .

Additional costs:

  • Depending on the results, the doctor may recommend additional testing.

Discounts:

  • The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services offers a locator [2] for clinics providing services on an income-based sliding scale.
  • Many hospitals offer discounts of up to 50% for uninsured/self-paying patients. For example, St. Joseph Hospital[3] in Orange, CA discounts its billed charges by 45%.

Shopping for blood tests:

  • Patients with health insurance that requires them to use “in network” providers should check whether a specific lab is within the network; a doctor who works within an insurance plan might, without checking, refer patients to a lab that isn’t covered under that plan. Always double-check for insurance coverage before any blood work is done.
  • Blood tests can be done at the office of a primary care provider or specialist, in a clinic or in a hospital.
  • For patients who want anonymity or do not wish to go through a doctor, companies such as LabCorp[4] , Quest Diagnostics[5] and Health Testing Centers[6] offer laboratory testing direct to patients. However, it is important to seek the advice of a doctor for any health concerns.
Material on this page is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice. Always consult your physician or pharmacist regarding medications or medical procedures.

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