Georgia Senate OKs surprise billing legislation: 6 things to know

Georgia senators have approved legislation to end surprise billing, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

Six things to know:

1. Senate Bill 56, sponsored by state Sen. Chuck Hufstetler, R-Rome, aims to address situations where a patient visits an emergency room at an in-network facility and then receives an unexpected bill from an out-of-network provider.  

2. The legislation would require insurance companies and hospitals to notify patients of who their physicians will be and whether the physicians are in-network — at the patient's request, according to the report. A similar bill is being considered in the state House.

3. The Senate bill would also require insurers to pay out-of-network providers using a formula that includes a benchmarking database from nonprofit organization FAIR Health.

4. Physicians support the legislation, but insurance companies argue that the set amount they would pay would be too high.

5. Georgia senators passed the bill after it was amended to read that patients would be responsible for their own copays to the hospital, according to the Journal-Constitution.

6. The state House will now consider the bill.


More articles on healthcare finance:

FAIR Health outlines potential solutions to surprise billing problem
Washington state House votes to end surprise billing
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