Trump administration pushes for healthcare price transparency: 6 things to know

Federal officials are looking for ways to achieve greater price transparency in healthcare, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Six things to know:

1. The effort by President Donald Trump's administration involves patients as well as insurers, hospitals and providers.

2. Federal officials want to require that physicians and hospitals provide patients with their total price of care up front, regardless of whether the healthcare provider is in the patient's insurance network or not, according to the Journal, which cites people familiar with the discussions.

3. The people familiar with the matter also said the administration wants to require that insurers in the private-employer market publicize the rates they negotiate with providers for services.

4. The administration believes it can accomplish this greater price transparency in various ways, such as such as using hospital payment rules under Medicare, according to the Journal. People familiar with the discussions told the publication the U.S. Labor Department may also be authorized through the Employee Retirement Income Security Act to compel disclosure of the rates insurers negotiate with providers.

5. The federal push for greater price transparency comes after a previous administration proposal to require hospitals and providers to publish the prices they negotiate with payers for patients to see. The people familiar with the discussions said the initiatives currently being considered by federal officials would go beyond the previous proposal.

6. Supporters say requiring price and rate disclosure could potentially lead to lower healthcare costs, while critics say it is unclear how many consumers would use price information to find lower-cost treatment, according to the Journal. The publication also notes that proposals requiring cost disclosures would also likely face industry opposition and legal challenges.

Access the full report here

 

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Trump administration pushes for healthcare price transparency: 6 things to know

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