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Surprise Hospital Bills Legislation Passes Assembly

The Assembly unanimously passed legislation (A.7611-A) to protect consumers from surprise hospital bills when they seek emergency care. Although a 2014 law protects consumers from surprise medical bills from physicians providing emergency services, a loophole leaves patients seeking emergency care vulnerable to getting exorbitant bills from the hospital if it is not in their health insurance plan’s network. While health insurers are currently required to pay those bills in order to protect their enrollees, notwithstanding how excessive the charges might be, the patient can get caught in the middle of a protracted billing dispute. The legislation, sponsored by Insurance Chairmen Assemblyman Kevin Cahill and Senator James Seward, protects patients by closing the loophole. In the Senate, the legislation (S.4241-A) has advanced to the floor.

Click here to see NYSCOP’s memo in support of the legislation.