McMorris Rodgers reaffirms her commitment to the transparency bill.

McMorris Rodgers reaffirms her commitment to the transparency bill.

The House is currently discussing a significant healthcare plan that includes reducing hospital payments to align them with payments received by independent clinics.

However, significant opposition from the healthcare sector and the possibility of a government shutdown have hindered lawmakers’ efforts thus far.

The Chair of the House Energy & Commerce CommitteeCathy McMorris Rodgers

Representative (R-Washington) participated in a discussion with POLITICO on Wednesday to talk about the current situation and next steps for addressing healthcare costs. A group of supporters and organizations in the industry also shared their thoughts on the most effective strategies for tackling this issue.

Here are three things to remember from the event:

to decriminalize

McMorris Rodgers reaffirms her support for the bill that aims to remove criminal penalties.

McMorris Rodgers acknowledged that the situation is constantly changing.PATIENT Act

This would result in decreased Medicare reimbursements for drugs at off-campus hospital outpatient clinics.

The vote for the bill was cancelled earlier this week due to the chaos in Capitol Hill regarding the funding of the government.

Rodgers, who leads the House Energy and Commerce Committee, stated that she is fully dedicated to bringing this bill to the floor for consideration.

She did not specify a specific time for when the bill would be evaluated, but instead expressed a desire for a vote to occur “as soon as possible” and no later than the end of the year.

Passing laws is just the beginning of addressing consolidation and expenses.

It was suggested by McMorris Rodgers that this bill, which addresses issues of price transparency, is just the initial action taken by Congress to address the consolidation and expenses in the healthcare industry.

“She expressed the need to tackle the factors that are influencing the expense of healthcare. Despite the increasing consolidation, the cost of healthcare is not decreasing.”

McMorris Rodgers praised the implementation of price transparency as a means to tackle expenses. The PATIENT Act featured provisions to alter the type of prices that hospitals and insurers are required to make public on the internet.

Hospitals and insurers are currently mandated by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to disclose negotiated rates for specific hospital services, but many hospitals have not fully complied with this requirement.

McMorris Rodgers emphasized the significance of this legislation in providing data that can be utilized to its fullest potential.

She stated that a section of the law requests a report from the Department of Health and Human Services regarding consolidation, which would provide valuable information for the committee’s actions. Members of the House of Representatives who are Democrats had proposed adding requirements to the bill that would mandate facilities to disclose their ownership information, such as whether they are owned by a private equity firm.

Hospitals attribute the increase in costs to Medicare and Medicaid.

The hospital reception area has objected to the site-neutral payments effort, stating that the policy fails to accurately account for the extra expenses involved in off-site clinics.

During the POLITICO event, Stacey Hughes from the American Hospital Association joined a panel discussion and attributed the issue of high healthcare costs to the federal government.

According to Hughes, hospitals do not receive full reimbursement from Medicare for their services, leading them to depend on higher rates from commercial payers to offset the shortfall.

She added that removing funds without having a thorough discussion will result in different clinical results and patient care standards.

Some other participants suggested that the issue includes hospitals acquiring physician practices and increasing expenses.

Ilyse Schuman, representing large employers through the American Benefits Council, expressed that consolidation has resulted in higher expenses without significantly improving access to quality.

Hughes responded by stating that the majority of consolidation has taken place through insurers acquiring practices. The factors driving the consolidation of healthcare facilities, which is currently under review by the Justice Department and Federal Trade Commission, may influence the actions of Congress.

Hughes stated that it is a lose-lose situation. If you purchase the practice, you are supporting open access but will face criticism. If you do not buy it, you will close an access point and still face criticism.