The "Out-of-Network Consumer Protection, Transparency, Cost Containment and Accountability Act (Assembly Bill 2039)" was signed into law by Governor Phil Murphy. This bill will go a long way in helping to control out-of-network health costs and surprise billing by providers. The new law will:
• Require hospitals to disclose which out-of-network providers will be charging them before a patient undergoes treatment or surgery.
• Allow for binding arbitration between patients and out-of-network providers to settle costs of an out-of-network bill.
Hospitals must post on their website the names of medical professionals they employ, their contact information and the insurance coverage they accept, according to (S485) Hospitals also must provide the same information for specialists they do business with, such as anesthesiologists and pathologists.
If the network status of the facility changes as it relates to the covered person's health benefits plan, the hospital must notify the patient "promptly," according to the legislation.
Supporters of the new law say it will allow for fairer negotiation between the insurance carrier and provider as well as increase the focus on quality of care.
The effective date will be 90 days after the enactment date.
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