Cong. Cuellar: 'No Surprises Act' Ensures New Protections Against Certain Medical Expenses

No Surprises Act jumps into effect January 1st

Texas Insider Report WASHINGTON, D.C. – Cong. Henry Cuellar (D-TX-28) highlighted the implementation of the "No Surprises Act" earlier today, which kicked into effect on January 1st and ensures that Emergency Medical Patients do not receive surprise medical fees.

The provision removes surprise fees that are charged by out-of-network doctors or facilities following emergency medical care.
The bill also ensures that uninsured and self-pay patients receive key information, including overviews of anticipated costs and details about their rights.

“All Texans deserve access to affordable, quality medical care in preventative and emergency settings,”said Congressman Cuellar.

“As a champion of this bill from its earliest stages, I am confident that this will provide the necessary consumer protection for our friends and family members when they are at their most vulnerable. As patients, and as consumers, we deserve full transparency for any potential medical services. We must continue fighting for these protections amidst a global pandemic that has pinned Americans between insurers and doctors.”

The following consumer protection provisions are included in the No Surprises Act:
  • Ban surprise bills for emergency services, even if you get them out-of-network and without approval beforehand (prior authorization).
  • Ban out-of-network cost-sharing (like out-of-network coinsurance or copayments) for all emergency and some non-emergency services. You can’t be charged more than in-network cost-sharing for these services. 
  • Ban out-of-network charges and balance bills for supplemental care (like anesthesiology or radiology) by out-of-network providers who work at an in-network facility.
  • Require that health care providers and facilities give you an easy-to-understand notice explaining that getting care out-of-network could be more expensive and options to avoid balance bills. You’re not required to sign this notice or get care out-of-network.
Congressman Henry Cuellar is a senior member of the U.S. House Appropriations Committee. Previously, he served as a Texas State Representative and Texas Secretary of State
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