Surprise Medical Billing fix is a money grab


Dear Editor,

Your readers are probably familiar with ‘Surprise Medical Billing.’ It’s when insurance companies stick patients with the bill for so-called “out of network” care. But did you know that insurers intentionally narrow their “in-network” hospitals and doctors so they can pay fewer claims and pocket the difference?

It boggles the mind that we actually pay these companies to run this racket against us!

Now the insurance companies are pushing so-called “rate setting” legislation in Congress to “solve” Surprise Medical Billing. Don’t be fooled. This is nothing but another money grab by the big insurers.

If insurers are allowed to set reimbursement rates for hospitals and doctors for “out of network” care, what do you think will happen? You got it…they’ll set artificially low rates and keep more money in their own pockets. And what happens then? Already struggling hospitals are pushed to financial brink and fewer doctors are able to maintain their practices.

This is a bill that will actually hurt patients, could close hospitals, and lead to doctor shortages. It’s not a solution to surprise medical bills in any way. Insurers have spent more than $70 million to pass rate setting legislation because it is a major financial win for them. Any form of rate setting is a win for insurers at the expense of patients. Congress shouldn’t fall for phony ‘compromises’ that still give insurance companies the power to set artificially low rates and harm patients’ access to their doctors.

Congress has to get this policy right and stop surprise medical billing with legislation that prioritizes patients. Independent Dispute Resolution (IDR) has been working from New York to Texas. It’s proven, fair and, most importantly, removes patients from billing disputes between doctors and insurers.

IDR solves Surprise Medical Billing without giving the insurance industry a freehand to set prices and line their pockets. That’s the right forward for patients and providers alike.

Sincerely,

Wayne Deschambeau,

Wayne HealthCare President & CEO

Greenville