June 25, 2021
ASA-Supported Bipartisan Letter Calls for Balanced and Accountable Implementation of the No Surprises Act
Last week, a bipartisan group of 97 members of Congress sent a communication urging officials in the Biden Administration to follow Congressional intent on the recently passed No Surprises Act, which aims to ensure that surprise medical bills (SMBs) are eliminated and that health care payment disputes are handled fairly. The No Surprises Act, signed into law in December 2020 as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, was a culmination of years of bipartisan, bicameral discussions on how best to balance billing for out-of-network care. The inclusion of an independent dispute resolution (IDR) process in the legislation was a direct result of advocacy by ASA and other physician organizations.
Led by Representatives Tom Suozzi (D-NY) and Brad Wenstrup (R-OH), the Congressional letter was addressed to Secretary of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra, Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen, and Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh, who are responsible for federal rulemaking to implement the legislation’s provisions guiding payment disputes between physicians and insurance companies. The letter calls for the use of IDR as a backstop in the case that no agreement can be reached.
ASA members had a robust engagement on Capitol Hill on the letter and this issue, including sending more than 30,000 grassroots messages calling for a fair solution that protects patients while creating a balanced playing field between insurance companies and physicians.
ASA is working closely with Congress and with the Biden Administration to ensure that the new law is implemented in a manner consistent with Congressional intent.
Read the Congressional letter.