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Posts Tagged ‘Healthcare Price Transparency Bill’

I’m Seeing a Trend Here

The other day, I ran across a news story about a consumer dealing with cost transparency.  A mother was facing her daughter’s need for an MRI to determine if a spot on the young girl’s liver was cancerous.  Without a doubt, that mom was going to get the scan done so follow-up care decisions could be made quickly. But since the family had yet to meet the deductible of their high deductible health plan, the full cost of the test was going to come out of her pocket.

So how could she find a cost-effective place for the MRI?

Yeah, you know the story… she couldn’t.  The mom called a number of imaging centers only to learn she wouldn’t truly know what the cost was going to be…. until after the bill arrived.  “It’s completely unbelievable that you’re expected to decide where you’re going to have a test done without having any idea how much it’s going to be,” she told reporter Linda Hurtado, ABC Action News in Tampa. “Knowing that you’re going to have to pay out of pocket, it could be hundreds of dollars difference from one place to another.”

Boy, have I heard that a time or two….

The rest of the story, though, is more hopeful.  Both houses of the Florida Legislature are currently studying legislation called the Healthcare Price Transparency Bill, which would spell out new rules for select healthcare deliverers to post their prices on the waiting room wall.  So, in the words of Rep. Richard Corcoran, one of the representatives who sponsored it…  you could walk into the care center and say, “Wow, I’m about to get gouged!”

I’m seeing more stories about consumers being frustrated when it comes to knowing what healthcare costs will be before they make their purchase.  That’s bad.  But, as I’ve also chronicled here previously, I’m seeing consumers speak up about the issue of transparency… and elected officials seem to be ready to listen and act.  That’s good.

So, you see, if we all shout long and loud enough about issues like this, our voices WILL be heard.   And hopefully our concerns WILL be addressed.

And then I won’t have anything to write about any more.