As you know, the American Hospital Association (AHA) led a multi-party lawsuit to block the Final Rule requiring hospitals to publish their contracted rates by 1/1/21.
The plaintiffs entered a Motion for Summary Judgment to fast-track the adjudication of its lawsuit so hospitals would have resolution on whether or not to allocate resources to meet this extensive requirement. HHS responded with its own Summary Judgment Motion, with oral arguments to be heard from both sides the day after tomorrow (4/22/20).
However, due to the coronavirus epidemic, the Court indefinitely postponed the oral arguments, thus leaving the 1/1/21 implementation date as law.
Here’s the plaintiff’s response to delaying the oral arguments:
“We appreciate the extraordinary constraints under which the courts are currently operating because of the COVID-19 pandemic. At the same time, hospitals have not been relieved of the January 1, 2021 deadline to comply with the Administration's new negotiated charge disclosure requirements – a deadline that was difficult even before the Nation’s hospitals have been put under the unimaginable strain of the current pandemic. In addition to being unlawful, the new CMS rule increases the financial strain on hospitals nationwide, many of which are already at the financial breaking point due to the present public health crisis. Accordingly, Plaintiffs respectfully suggest that the Court consider in the coming weeks whether a telephonic argument in early May might be suitable, in order to continue to progress the case to decision.”
Why does this matter? Quite simply, if this action is not adjudicated with enough time left before 1/1/21, hospitals will be scrambling to meet the deadline. Failure to meet compliance results in a financial penalty of $300/day. Moreover, non-compliant hospitals will be listed on CMS's website.
Speaking with several PR firms, the consensus is that a negative new story (e.g., surprise medical bill) coupled with a hospital's non-compliant listing on CMS's website would be absolutely devastating for a hospital's reputation.
Colleagues, I would encourage you to request a proposal from HPS to meet the new CMS Price Transparency Requirements, should they be upheld by the Courts and enforced as of 1/1/21. We have a guarantee to make the 1/1/21 compliance deadline for new client agreements we accept by 6/1/20. Please be assured that HPS is uniquely positioned to enable hospitals to meet the new requirements, and we are:
100% Compliant. Cost Effective. Headache Free.
In order to generate a proposal, I just need a quick 15-minute intake call to assess how many payer contracts we will need to analyze. To schedule this call, click on my private calendar link [HERE].