Reducing Health Care Costs; Improving Quality

Reducing Health Care Costs; Improving Quality

SF 3480 – House and Senate Votes
YES is a vote supporting Minnesota Chamber position

Representative Sarah Anderson, R-Plymouth, and Bentley Graves, director of health policy, discuss health care cost transparency during the last days of the 2018 legislative session.

Ever-increasing health care costs have pushed health insurance products toward higher out-of-pocket costs for policyholders. Health insurance deductibles are more prevalent in Minnesota than in other states, and, on average, deductibles are higher than they are in most other states. As a result, more and more Minnesotans shoulder a much larger share of their health care costs themselves, often spending thousands of dollars in deductibles before coverage kicks in. This has forced individuals to be better consumers of health care, though often with incomplete information about cost.

Minnesota already has laws that require health care providers and health insurers to provide a “good faith estimate” of the cost of medical procedures at the request of a patient or prospective patient. This legislation builds on the current law with a requirement that this information be provided to the consumer within 10 business days. The bill also requires health care providers to disclose any facility fees or other charges that customers may be required to pay as part of the visit. In addition, as this legislation moved through the committee process, identical amendments were added in both the House and Senate to include a requirement that health care providers include pricing information for their top 25 procedures on posters in their lobby or waiting room and on their websites.

We thank Senator Rich Draheim, R-Madison Lake, and Representative Sarah Anderson, R-Plymouth, for sponsoring this bill and carrying it through the legislative process. This bill received unanimous support in the House and received only two “no” votes in the Senate.

Interested in other issues? Visit the Voting Record page.