Rapper Fat Joe takes on hospital industry executives in an advertisement, contending that many hospitals are disobeying a law that requires them to publicly post the prices they charge cash-paying patients and insurance companies for every service they offer.
The ad, paid for by a group called Power to the Patients, states, correctly, that hospitals must list their negotiated prices and asserts that the rule helps patients by making it harder for them to be overcharged. The ad also blames politicians and regulators because the price information is still not necessarily available.
Hospitals have dragged their feet, and compliance is spotty. Studies have found that many hospitals have posted at least some data but that large shares of the facilities have failed to post everything required.
In early June, CMS issued penalty fines of about $1.1 million against two Georgia hospitals — Northside Hospital Atlanta and Northside Hospital Cherokee — that are owned by the same company. Those were the first fines issued under the new rules.
As of late July, the agency had sent 368 warning notices to hospitals and issued 188 corrective action plan requests to hospitals that had previously received warning notices but had not yet corrected deficiencies, according to a statement from Dr. Meena Seshamani, deputy administrator and director of the Center for Medicare.
Author(s): Julie Appleby
Publication Date: 10 Aug 2022
Publication Site: Kaiser Health News
The vast majority of U.S. hospitals are ignoring a new bipartisan federal law that requires the facilities to make their service prices available to the public, new research shows, and the Biden administration is facing growing criticism for not doing enough to enforce compliance with the landmark rule.
Now one state, Colorado, has taken matters into its own hands, passing an innovative law to bring its hospitals into compliance with the federal price transparency requirements — despite health care lobbyists’ efforts to sink the legislative effort.
Against the backdrop of limited federal enforcement, Colorado is leading the charge on creatively bringing hospitals into compliance, thanks to a new state law: House Bill 1285.
The law, recently signed by Gov. Jared Polis (D) and effective starting this August, has dual goals of accelerating the timeline on which hospital systems must meet the federal mandate, and curbing the crippling medical debt that plagues more than 100 million Americans.
The measure adds a state-level enforcement mechanism by requiring that hospitals be in compliance with the federal pricing transparency act in order to send Coloradans to collections for medical bills.
David Silverstein, founder and chairman of patient advocacy organization Broken Healthcare, wrote the bill and spearheaded the effort to get it across the finish line.
Author(s): Aditi Ramaswami
Publication Date: 27 Jun 2022
Publication Site: The Lever