How Much Does a CT Scan Cost Without Insurance – Overview
According to studies, more than 80 million CT scans are performed every year in the United States alone. Patients need to visit an outpatient facility or hospital to get a CT scan done.
However, you should know about its cost, especially if you don’t have insurance coverage for the test.
Let’s take a closer look at the cost of CT scans without insurance and find ways to get affordable scans when you don’t have insurance coverage.
What Is a CT Scan?
A computerized tomography (CT) scan is a particular form of healthcare screening that uses X-ray and other computer technologies to give healthcare professionals a detailed look at a specific part of the body.
CT scans are usually used to evaluate the health of your muscles, bones and organs within the body. Sometimes, the test may be done as a stand-alone procedure, whereas it is usually part of a more comprehensive healthcare treatment program.
Usually, X-ray tests are recommended whenever possible instead of CT scans as they are easier to administer and also significantly cheaper. On the other hand, X-ray tests cannot provide the in-depth detail that CT scans do, especially the details of the internal organs and other internal body structures.
In short, a CT scan is a diverse test used for several reasons. The primary purpose of this imaging test is to assist healthcare providers in accurately diagnosing a specific problem within the body.
Cost of CT scan without Insurance
On average, a CT scan costs around US$ 3,000, irrespective of the specific part of the body being scanned. However, this amount is an average cost as the total cost varies drastically, depending on several factors. So, you may often end up paying more than US$ 3,000 without insurance for undergoing a CT scan.
CT scan equipment is highly complex and hence it is extremely expensive. It takes a highly-trained technician to operate the machine and ensure accurate results. You should expect to pay at least US$ 200 for all CT scans without insurance coverage.
If you need to undergo a highly specialized medical test, there are chances of lowering its overall cost, but with some level of difficulty.
Besides the cost directly associated with the scan, you also have to bear the expense of qualified healthcare professionals and the cost of using the CT scan facility. These costs vary as they are usually dependent on your location.
For instance, a CT scan in a big city in Texas may cost around US$ 3.500, while the same can cost around US$ 3,000 in a smaller mid-west city. This usually depends on the average cost of living in the region.
Generally, CT scans performed at a hospital are more expensive as compared to those done at outpatient facilities. If you can find a CT scan facility that runs lots of tests for patients, that facility will likely offer the screening at a lower price.
Doctor’s Referral for CT Scan
Usually, you will not need a doctor’s referral to get a CT scan. Many outpatient facilities and hospitals let patients schedule a CT scan without a doctor’s referral.
Still, it makes sense to get a recommendation from the primary healthcare provider before getting a CT scan. Though you may think you are sure that you need to get a CT scan to assess a current health issue, a different test might be more effective.
In such cases, the doctor will be the best judge of the type of test you need to undergo to evaluate your health problem.
Even if you don’t need it, certain types of health insurance plans will need you to get a doctor’s referral to undergo a CT scan if you wish for the insurance to cover the cost.
The specific cost of a CT scan without insurance varies greatly, usually depending on the type of facility you visit and the location of the screening lab or hospital.
CT scans in large cities typically cost significantly more as compared to smaller, inner cities. This is usually because the average CT scan cost depends on the cost of living.
To get the best price, make sure to contact several different facilities to find out their specific charges for a CT scan. Even if your insurance policy covers the cost of a CT scan at the hospital, at times, it will be more affordable to forgo the insurance coverage and get the test done at another facility for a remarkably lower and more affordable cost pocket.
I am a dedicated healthcare researcher and an enthusiast specializing in medical grants, medical education and research. Through my articles, I aim to empower healthcare professionals and researchers with valuable insights and resources to navigate these critical aspects effectively.