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Q  Who sets charges?
A Hospitals have in place a chargemaster, which is a comprehensive list of all items that can be billed to a patient or insurance provider. Chargemasters are extensive, containing thousands of items, depending upon the facility. Under federal law, all insurers, including Medicare and Medicaid, must be billed the amount listed on the chargemaster for the services rendered. However, these charges are rarely paid due to the contracted payment rates negotiated between hospitals and insurers.

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