Patients continue to bear the serious financial consequences of surprise medical bills from private equity firms and hospitals. Cynthia Weber Cascio, a patient and former reporter, recounted her own personal experience navigating a hospital maze that ultimately landed her with a $17,000 surprise bill. Highlights from her Washington Post op-ed — The health-care industry is letting surgeons behave like muggers — is included below.
See below highlights from an article published in Kaiser Health News. Read the full article here.
- "The American Hospital Association, the biggest hospital trade group, says it promotes 'best practices' among medical systems to treat patients more effectively and improve community health. But the powerful association has stayed largely silent about hospitals suing thousands of patients for overdue bills, seizing homes or wages and even forcing families into bankruptcy."
- "Atlantic Health System, whose CEO is the AHA’s chairman, Brian Gragnolati, has sued patients for unpaid bills thousands of times this year, court records show, including a family...
With millions of Americans still facing the threat of bankrupting surprise medical bills, Bloomberg profiles the onslaught of private equity money in 2019 that stalled the hope of a solution for consumers. The article notes that, “No advocacy group spent more than Doctor Patient Unity on a single issue in 2019.”
These firms and out-of-network providers rallied against the best solution to fix surprise billing – fair, market-based benchmark rates. It’s time for Congress to stop bailing out private equity and put patients first.
- “Confronted with the rare prospect of defeat on Capitol Hill, private equity...
ICYMI: New Analysis Shows Surprise Billing Charges Far Exceed Negotiated Rates, Adding $40 Billion in Annual Costs
Last month, a new analysis from Yale University’s Zack Cooper, Hao Nguyen, Nathan Shekita and Fiona Scott Morton zeroed in on some of the out-of-network providers and specialists who have built up a track record of sending surprise medical bills to patients. Not surprisingly, the report notes that “the ability to bill out of network allows these specialists to negotiate artificially high in-network rates.”
Cooper and his colleagues identified some startling charges billed by these out-of-network providers that far exceeded average negotiated rates — often by three or four times the negotiated price in the same market. Simply by...
Washington, DC - Following the announcement on a new surprise medical billing proposal, the Coalition Against Surprise Medical Billing issued the following statement:
“Surprise medical bills hurt patients, consumers and taxpayers. Americans deserve a solution that protects them from surprise medical bills and lowers costs. We remain committed to working with policymakers from both parties to find a solution – this year – that works for patients, consumers and taxpayers.”
“Arbitration is not a solution. It is a new bureaucratic process that creates another loophole for private equity firms to exploit, fails to protect patients from surprise medical bills and raises costs...
Below, see highlights from an op-ed published in the Boston Globe: Ending surprise billing: A moral test for physicians by Ashish K. Jha, M.D., MPH. To read the full piece, click here.
- "Most people, quite reasonably, think that if the hospital is in-network, everyone working there will be too. Some physician groups are exploiting this vulnerability, burdening patients with thousands of dollars in medical debt as a result. How do they do it? By choosing not to negotiate with insurance companies — and therefore charging whatever they want, out-of-network. But $28,000 for a couple of hours of...