After multiple court challenges, hospitals must now publicize the cash prices for 300 “shoppable” services and, starting next year, the discounts negotiated with insurers.
The hospital transparency rule was opposed by the American Hospital Association, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and other groups as a violation of the First Amendment rights of providers and insurers, and for requiring disclosure of trade secrets. A federal district court dismissed the AHA lawsuit seeking to overturn the rule on June 23, 2020. The U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia unanimously denied an appeal of the district court’s decision by AHA, on December 29.
The rule, put forward by the Trump Administration, goes beyond the so-called “chargemasters” hospitals use that bear little resemblance to what patients or insurance companies actually pay for a procedure. Hospitals must now post the out-of-pocket cash prices they charge people without insurance, such as Canadians who come to the United States for faster health care.
There is support for price transparency across the political spectrum.
Decades over due!