Despite the Coronavirus Pandemic, Medicare Officials Continue Push for Price Transparency by Pressuring Hospitals to Disclose Rates Negotiated with Private Payers

Clinical laboratories are advised to continue developing methods for making prices for procedures available to the general public Even as an effective treatment for COVID-19 continues to elude federal healthcare agencies, Medicare officials are pressing ahead with efforts to bring about transparency in hospital healthcare pricing, including clinical laboratory procedures and prescription drugs costs. In FY 2021 Proposed Rule CMS-1735-P, titled, “Medicare Program; Hospital Inpatient Prospective...

Patient’s $25,865 Bill for Throat Culture and Blood Tests Puts Spotlight on Hidden Costs of Clinical Laboratory Tests

As CMS price transparency rules go into effect, and demand grows for publishing provider charges, consumers are becoming aware of how widely healthcare prices can vary With the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic saturating the news, it is easy to forget that clinical laboratories regularly conduct medical tests for influenza, the common cold, and other illnesses, most of which are affordable and covered by health insurance. So, how did a common throat culture and blood draw result in a $25,865...

Hospital Associations and Healthcare Groups Battle HHS Efforts to Expand Pricing Transparency Rules to Include Negotiated Rates with Payers

In a federal lawsuit, seven healthcare organizations and hospitals systems allege HHS exceeded its statutory authority and clinical laboratories will want to watch how this court case unfolds There is quite a brouhaha over the final new federal rule requiring hospitals to allow patients and the public to see the prices they charge for services—including clinical laboratory and anatomic pathology prices. Some very influential hospital associations and healthcare systems are opposing...

Excessive $48,329 Charge for California Patient’s Outpatient Clinical Laboratory Testing Calls Attention to Chargemaster Rates and New CMS Price Transparency Rule

Studies show medical laboratories may be particularly hit by adjustments to hospital chargemasters as hospitals prepare to comply with Medicare’s New Transparency Rule Recently, Kaiser Health News (KHN) published a story about a $48,329 bill for allergy testing that cast a spotlight on hospital chargemaster rates just as healthcare providers are preparing to publish their prices online to comply with a new Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) rule aimed at increasing pricing...

Well-known Journalist Blasts Hospitals, Drug Makers, and Device Manufacturers for Lack of Transparent Prices and High Cost of Medical Care

Public scrutiny of exorbitant hospital ‘chargemaster’ prices for health services and medical laboratory tests is growing Publication by Time Magazine of an in-depth investigation of the exorbitant prices charged to patients by many hospitals continues to cause a stir among both healthcare policymakers and patient advocates. Clinical laboratory executives and pathologists should take note of this public debate. The exposé was published by Time on March 4 under the title “Bitter Pill: Why...
;