New Hampshire Hospital Association strongly supports price transparency and protecting patients from surprise medical bills as consumers should be able to learn and understand what their anticipated health care costs will be for services provided. The No Surprises Act was signed into law as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 in an effort to address surprise medical billing at the federal level, with most sections of the legislation going into effect on January 1, 2022.
The No Surprises Act establishes patient protections against surprise medical bills and includes several transparency and other provisions, including:
- Protects patients from receiving surprise medical bills resulting from gaps in coverage for emergency services and certain services provided by out-of-network clinicians at in-network facilities, including by air ambulances.
- Holds patients liable only for their in-network cost-sharing amount, while giving providers and insurers an opportunity to negotiate reimbursement.
- Allows providers and insurers to access an independent dispute resolution process in the event disputes arise around reimbursement. The legislation does not set a benchmark reimbursement amount.
- Requires both providers and health plans to assist patients in accessing health care cost information.