Houston Matters

Will Heath Care Merger Lower Costs for Texas Patients?

Health economist Dr. Vivian Ho of Rice University discusses the potential merger of Memorial Hermann Health System and Baylor Scott & White Health.

This photo shows one of the hospitals that are part of the Memorial Hermann health system.
This photo shows one of the hospitals that are part of the Memorial Hermann health system.

Making health care more affordable was among the reasons cited Monday when it was announced that Houston’s Memorial Hermann Health System is planning to merge with Dallas-based Baylor Scott & White Health by next year. The two non-profit systems operate nearly 70 hospital campuses and serve more than 30 counties.

In a press release, Baylor Scott & White Health CEO Jim Stinton said the health care providers are “committed to making safe, high quality health care more convenient and affordable.”

But a local health economist is concerned the move could actually raise prices for some consumers.

In the audio above, Houston Matters producer Maggie Martin talks with Dr. Vivian Ho, who chairs health economics at Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy.

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