WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congressman Schweikert and Congresswoman Moore introduced HR 5816, the Continuing Care for Patients Act of 2020, legislation to ensure patients can continue to receive treatment if contractual agreements between their providers and health insurance change and their provider is no longer in network. This legislation has been included in a larger bipartisan package, the Consumer Protections Against Surprise Medical Bills Act, unveiled by the House Ways and Means committee to address surprise billing.
“It can be a terrifying situation for patients when suddenly and unexpectedly they have their previous provider go out-of-network,” said Congressman Schweikert. “Be it for a pregnancy, or an acute condition, this bill will allow patients to finish their course of care and give them time to find a new provider. This is an important fix to be included within the surprise billing package, and I am proud to be a part of the effort to provide much needed stability for Americans within the healthcare system.”
“As a cancer survivor, I know how important it is to have sustained access to high quality health care and providers you trust and have worked with can be to having good health outcomes. I am pleased to join my colleague from Arizona, Congressman Schweikert, in introducing the Continuing Care for Patients Act as part of bipartisan committee effort to address surprise billing. For too long, patients have been squeezed by hospitals, physicians and insurers for out-of-network charges. Balanced billing, or surprise medical bills, as they are known colloquially, undercuts our health care system and harms our society’s wellbeing. I applaud the Committee for finding a bipartisan solution to the surprise billing crisis by protecting patients from the financial harm they face when they are treated by an out-of-network physician or in an out-of-network hospital.
Receiving long-term treatment already takes a financial, emotional and physical toll. I know this on a personal level,” continued Congresswoman Moore. “This will ensure that patients already facing difficult health battles can know they won’t have to switch providers or facilities in the middle of that night or for others, create a transition period to allow them to more easily transfer to another provider that is covered by their health insurance without facing unexpected costs or delays.”
H.R. 5816, the Continuing Care for Patients Act, provides protections for patients in who’s provider abruptly moves out-of-network. This legislation requires that patients be notified on a timely basis if their provider is no longer in-network and their right to continue seeing that provider until the treatment is completed or for up to 90 days. The 90 day threshold will ensure patients have sufficient time to coordinate care with a new provider in their network if the course of treatment is expected to exceed that time frame.
Text of the Continuing Care for Patients Act is available HERE.
A section-by-section summary of the Consumer Protections Against Surprise Medical Bills Act of 2020 is available HERE.
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