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GRMC runs into issues with new federal law

A Department of Health and Human Services ruling mandated hospitals to post their standard list of prices on the internet in a machine-readable format by Jan.1 but, Graham Regional Medical Center and many other hospitals have yet to do so, due to a lack of guidance.

Hospitals were required to make their standard list of prices available in some form before the ruling which HHS mandated in April 2018 with hopes of creating a more competitive health industry which will lead to lower prices.

“America’s healthcare system has to change, and President Trump’s Administration recognizes that. This payment proposal takes important steps toward a Medicare system that puts patients in charge of their care and allows them to receive the quality and price information needed to drive competition and increase value,” HHS Secretary Alex Azar said in a press release.

GRMC Chief Executive Officer Shane Kernell said most hospitals across the nation are not sure what is expected out of them due to very little guidance from the federal government and HHS.

“Everyone is just looking at each other going ‘what does it mean?’ no one knows what it means,” Kernell said. “The guidance is just so vague it’s gray. Literally, I went website by website looking for hospitals that have posted their charges online and I found one and it was a big hospital in San Antonio, the Methodist system which is a for-profit hospital.”

For the full story, read the Jan. 5 edition of The Graham Leader.

The Graham Leader

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