Price transparency bill ignores complex cases

May 21, 2010

A bill introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives that would require all physicians and hospitals to publicly disclose prices met opposition in the first hearings earlier this month.

A bill introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives that would require all physicians and hospitals to publicly disclose prices met opposition in its first hearings earlier this month.

The bill, "Transparency in All Health Care Pricing Act of 2010," was introduced by Rep. Steve Kagen, MD, (D-Wisconsin), an immunologist. The legislation states that "any individual or business entity that offers healthcare-related products or services must at all times openly disclose all of their prices, including on the Internet."

No physician groups were asked to testify at the Health subcommittee meeting, but Steven J. Summer, president and CEO of the Colorado Hospital Association, on behalf of the American Hospital Association, told lawmakers that disclosing prices for medical services is a complex process.