Stable healthcare prices reported for June


Healthcare prices in the U.S. were overall steady in June, according to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The BLS Producer Price Indices measure average changes in selling prices received by domestic producers for their output. The June PPI report indicated that prices were flat overall across the range of healthcare industries from May through June and were 1.9 percent higher than a year ago.

[See also: Healthcare prices rose in May]

The PPI translates into actual or expected reimbursement for a sample of treatments or services.

In the May-through-June period, prices received by physician offices were down 0.2 percent, while hospital prices increased only 0.1 percent. The PPI for nursing care facilities experienced the largest bump, increasing by 0.4 percent.

Prices received by home healthcare services were flat from May through June. Prices in the medical and diagnostic laboratory sector and blood and organ donor banks decreased 0.2 percent and were flat, respectively.

Comparing June 2011 to June 2012, the largest increase in healthcare PPIs was in the residential mental health facilities market, which experienced a 2.9 percent increase. The second largest bump was in the dental office sector, which showed a PPI increase of 2.0 percent.