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May 8, 2023

Daugherty Bill to Lower Health Care Costs Passes House

DENVER, CO - The House today passed a bipartisan bill sponsored by Representative Lindsey Daugherty to increase price transparency for health care services to save Colorado patients money.

“A report released last month found that roughly half of hospitals across the state do not comply with a federal hospital transparency law that provides patients with expected prices for the medical care they are seeking,” said Rep. Lindsey Daugherty, D-Arvada. “This transparency law allows patients to budget for inpatient, outpatient, surgery, and prescription drug costs so they can receive the care they need without being blindsided by an unmanageable hospital bill. We’re building the federal transparency requirement into Colorado law and that will save patients money on health care.”

SB23-252, also sponsored by Representative Anthony Hartsook, passed the House by a vote of 61-3. In 2022, the General Assembly passed legislation to prohibit hospitals from pursuing debt collection action against a patient if the hospital failed to comply with federal hospital price transparency laws during the patient’s treatment. 

Under the federal Hospital Price Transparency Rule, hospitals must publicly post standard charges and provide an out-of-pocket cost estimator tool for patients. This bill would build on the federal transparency requirements by having hospitals post their Medicare reimbursement rates and requiring the Department of Health Care Policy and Financing to conduct performance assessments on Colorado hospitals to check for compliance. Violations of SB23-252 would be a deceptive trade practice under the Colorado Consumer Protection Act.


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