Surprise Billing

Surprise billing has always been an issue if you are in an emergency outside of
your normal healthcare facilities. Many have simply paid these outlandish
charges because they feared they would lose their health insurance if they
did not pay. Those that could not afford those charges either lost their
insurance or filed medical bankruptcy. This situation is grievous for the reasons
stated above.

Finally, the federal government, through the Health and Human Services
department along with other agencies is now stepping in and doing
something about it. These excess charges are now being banned as
excessive and unnecessary. Medicare and Medicaid never had those charges
as they were illegal. Now employer group and individual coverage will have
the same protection under the law.

These excessive charges happen when seeking urgent or emergency care
outside of your network and this is where most Americans are too
traumatized to even think about the charges. They usually just end up paying
them or taking out loans to pay for services rendered.
This was overdue and needed to help average Americans with excessive
medical bills.

Not normally a fan of government intervention but in this case, it was
overdue, and HHS has stepped up and done something positive about it.
This is an interim final bill that was done through executive order and should
be brought before Congress to pass a law prohibiting it. Consider for the
moment that more than 2/3 of all bankruptcies are because of excessive
medical expenses. This bill will stem that tide and hopefully eliminate these
charges in the future on a permanent basis.

Finally, something positive from our government that helps many
Americans. Long overdue.

Len Barend, broker, The Barend Agency Inc.


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