A person is in involved in a bad crash that is the fault of an uninsured driver. She is rushed to the emergency room, undergoes blood work, a neurological consultation, orthopedic consultation and a battery of tests. She is worried about her health but not the bills. Why should she worry, she has great health insurance? A few months later bills start to arrive in the mail, each one from a different independent contractor that rendered treatment at the hospital. Each provider claims that they are not on her health plan, so they are seeking payment in full directly from the patient. The charges total tens of thousands of dollars. Although this may sound unthinkable, this exact set of facts occurs on a daily basis at virtually every Florida hospital.
These “surprise bills” will finally stop. The Consolidated Appropriation Act of 2021 will be effective on January 1, 2022. Title I of the new law includes the “No Surprise Act”. The No Surprise Act will, among other things, bar providers who treat patients at hospitals with emergency treatment from billing the patient directly if they are not on the patient’s health insurance plan (although they can still bill for the costs of in network deductibles and co-pays). You can read more about this important, new law at www.cms.gov/nosurprises.