Lower Health Care Costs Act of 2019 to reduce out-of-pocket bills for patients


WASHINGTON (WJHL) — Federal lawmakers are expected to vote on a bill Wednesday that could reduce what you pay out-of-pocket for health care.

Just last week, a study by “Kaiser Family Foundation” found that in roughly one out of every six ER visits or hospital stays, the patient gets hit with a 
“surprise” medical bill.

Tennessee Senator Lamar Alexander is co-sponsoring the “Lower Health Care Costs Act of 2019,” which he says will end surprise billing.

“Nearly a year ago, Dr. Brent James from the National Academies testified before our Senate health committee with this startling statistic: up to half of what the American people spend on health care may be unnecessary,” Alexander said. “That would mean that up to half of the $3.5 trillion the United States collectively spent on health care in 2017 was unnecessary.”

According to Senator Alexander, that is $1.8 trillion, which is three times the amount spent on national defense and about 550 times the amount spent on national parks.

Senator Alexander also says the legislation will create more pricing transparency and increase competition to bring down drug costs.

The Senate Health Committee is expected to vote on the bill at 10:30 this morning.

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