Surprise medical billing ban raises prices elsewhere

The federal law banning surprise billing is protecting patients from huge medical bills but is raising costs elsewhere. New progress report shows that in over 80% of payment disputes, insurance companies were ordered to pay more to an out-of-network provider than to a contracted one. The arbitration process is taking up more time than expected, raising concerns that it is being used as a tool by companies to obtain even higher payments. The measure, initially projected to lower federal spending, is having unintended consequences. This is according to Zachary Baron, director of Georgetown University’s Health Policy and Law Initiative.

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