Federal rule to increase price transparency of medical services, including imaging

A new federal law proposed by CMS took effect on Jan. 1, requiring hospitals to publish online price lists for medical imaging and all other services they provide, according to a recent report by Newsweek.  

The new law will increase price transparency of medical services and treatments and could enable patients to more easily access their electronic health records (EHRs). CMS proposed the changes in April to its Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS) and Long-Term Care Hospital Prospective Payment System (LTCH PPS).  

Currently, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) mandates hospitals to release public price lists of their services, however the new law will require these prices to be readily available online in a downloadable format and prices are required to be updated annually.  

With the new rule, patients will still need to calculate out-of-pocket costs on their own as listed online prices will not reflect what insurers and government programs cover.  

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