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    Billing for Hospital Anesthesia Services

    How are anesthesia services billed?

    Your anesthesiologist will bill separately for his or her professional services, as will your surgeon and the other physicians who provide services for you while you are hospitalized. The hospital will issue a separate bill for all of the services and items the hospital provided during your hospitalization and that bill will include charges for the hospital’s role in the delivery of anesthesia services. For more information about hospital billings, you may contact your hospital’s financial counseling office. They can provide you with detailed information about billings for hospital services, including providing estimates of the expected cost of most surgeries and procedures.
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    How does Sutter Health charge for the hospital’s role in providing anesthesia services?

    Sutter hospitals charge for the hospital’s role in providing anesthesia services based on the specific type anesthesia services a patient receives.

    General Anesthesia
    There are two levels of general anesthesia in the operating room – complex and standard general anesthesia. We charge one flat amount for complex general anesthesia services for cases lasting up to and including 180 minutes. For cases lasting longer than 180 minutes, there is a different, higher charge. We use the same basic approach for standard general anesthesia – we charge a flat amount for cases lasting up to and including 180 minutes, and another, higher charge for standard general anesthesia cases that last longer than 180 minutes. This charge structure is designed to take into account that cases lasting over 180 minutes require more hospital resources. If general anesthesia is administered outside of an operating room suite, there is a single flat charge for the service regardless of where it takes place in the hospital. There is a separate pharmacy charge for the anesthetic gas and any other specific drugs used. To find out the amounts of these charges, or any other charges at the hospital where your surgery or procedure will take place, you should contact the financial counseling office at that hospital.

    Regional Anesthesia
    For monitored anesthesia care/regional anesthesia provided in the operating room, Sutter hospitals have a single flat rate charge. There are no charges for anesthetic gases, because they are not used, but there are separate pharmacy charges for the drugs used, including the epidural block and the drugs used to sedate the patient.

    Conscious Sedation
    For conscious sedation, whether in the operating room or elsewhere in the hospital, there is a single flat charge for the service regardless of where it takes place in the hospital. There are no charges for anesthetic gases, because they are not used, but there are separate pharmacy charges for the drugs used, including the drugs used to sedate the patient.

    Epidurals
    For epidurals with minimal sedation in the operating room, there will be pharmacy charges for the drugs used, including the epidural block and the drugs used to sedate the patient, but there will not be a separate anesthesia service charge. The exception to this rule is in the labor and delivery area, where there may be a flat "epidural management" charge in certain situations.

    • For more details about these charges, and any other hospital charges, you may contact the patient financial counselor or at your hospital.
    • For more information about how Sutter Health bills for the hospital’s role in providing anesthesia services, you can call Sutter’s Anesthesia Information Line at 916-297-9940.

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    What is the hospital’s role in delivering anesthesia services?

    The hospital supplies the equipment, supplies and staff required to safely and effectively deliver anesthesia services in the hospital. The specific resources the hospital provides varies depending upon the type of anesthesia and your particular medical condition. The hospital also provides the anesthesia gases and other drugs, which, as noted above, are charged separately through the hospital’s pharmacy. Information about the hospital resources that are directly related to the provision of general anesthesia and regional anesthesia is generally summarized here:
    How does Sutter Health charge for the hospital's role in providing anesthesia services?
    Hospital Anesthesia Equipment and Service Descriptions
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    How do Sutter’s costs of providing anesthesia relate to the price Sutter charges for anesthesia?

    Sutter’s charges for anesthesia services, and for almost all hospital services, exceed the hospital’s allocated costs for those services. We encourage patients to use the link in this FAQ to compare Sutter’s costs to the prices you or your insurer are charged: Average Anesthesia Service Cost by Location
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    Who can I contact for more information regarding Sutter Health’s charges for a Sutter Health hospital’s role in providing anesthesia services?

    You may call our Anesthesia Information Line at 916-297-9940.
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