"It should be concerning to every lawmaker in the country that 18% of the U.S. economy is shrouded in mystery," explains de Brantes. "Without price information, how can we possibly expect consumers to act in a value-conscious way? It is a duty of every state to protect its residents from unfair trade practices, and health care consumers are, for the most part, completely left to fend for themselves."
In the private sector, many health plans, employers, and an increasing number of other vendors have developed consumer price transparency tools that make price information more accessible to consumers. While these tools continue to evolve, none yet meet all of CPR's Comprehensive Specifications for Consumer Transparency Tools. They also suffer from missing data and many consumers do not have access to them. While private sector progress has been publicized, little has been done to evaluate and compare state level efforts regarding transparency.
Last fall several large national employers, labor, business coalitions and consumer groups issued a call to action to health plans and providers to share price information with consumers. Delbanco noted, "We know there is more plans and providers can be doing. Laws and forthcoming legislation can provide powerful motivation to be more transparent. We hope this report card spurs states to act to help consumers further."
March 20 WebinarOn March 20 from 1:00-2:00 p.m. ET, CPR and HCI 3 will host a webinar to discuss the Report Card on State Price Transparency Laws, examining and grading the price transparency laws in all 50 states. Register at http://catalyzepaymentreform.givezooks.com/events/webinar-on-report-card-on-states-price-transparency-law.About Catalyst for Payment Reform Catalyst for Payment Reform is an independent, non-profit organization working on behalf of large employers and other healthcare purchasers to catalyze improvements in the way healthcare services are paid for and to promote better and higher value care in the United States. About the Health Care Incentives Improvement Institute, Inc.The Health Care Incentives Improvement Institute, Inc. (HCI 3®) is a non-profit multi-stakeholder umbrella organization for Bridges to Excellence ® and PROMETHEUS Payment ®. The mission of the organization is to create significant improvements in the quality and affordability of health care by developing and implementing programs that recognize and reward physicians, hospitals and other health care providers that deliver safe, timely, effective, efficient, equitable and patient-centered care. HCI 3 offers a comprehensive package of solutions to employers, health plans and coalitions to improve the flawed incentives that currently permeate the U.S. health care system. SOURCE Health Care Incentives Improvement Institute and Catalyst for Payment Reform