Hospitals Are Required to Post Prices Starting This Year

Posted by CircuitGuy 1 year, 9 months ago to News
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From the gov't report:
Online posting of standard charges
In an effort to encourage price transparency by improving public accessibility of charge information, effective CY 2019 CMS updated its guidelines to specifically require hospitals to make public a list of their standard charges via the Internet in a machine readable format, and to update this information at least annually, or more often as appropriate. "

In the words of the article in the NYT:
"The Trump administration adopted the new requirement as part of its agenda to promote “transparency” in health care, in the belief that health markets would work better if consumers had more information. In another example, federal officials want to require pharmaceutical companies to disclose the list price of prescription drugs in television advertisements."

My Comment:
This is a good development. NYT and CNN wrote articles saying they predict the pricing information will be cryptic and useless to consumers. I think time will prove them wrong. This could be the first step toward ending the situation where providers and customers have no reason to know or care the prices.

NYT rightly points out that list prices are fanciful and grossly inflated. Everyone gets a discount by negotiating or getting an insurance-company negotiated rate. I think shining a light on that, making someone in accounting tell customers, "oh yeah, those are our list prices that are completely different from what everyone pays" is a start. Nothing stops a provider who doesn't want to deal with insurance companies or Medicare from posting its own prices and inviting customers to comparison shop.

So this is a good development for supporters of individuals rights to make their own decisions. The arc of history slowly bends toward liberty.

Links to MSM articles that are biased against the new rule:

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