Surprise medical bills from out-of-network healthcare providers now cost some 168,000 New Jersey residents roughly $400 million a year and have added more than $900 million to insurance claims for public workers in 2015 alone — a tab picked up by state taxpayers.
Efforts to reform this process date back more than seven years; surprise bills were the second most heavily lobbied issue in Trenton this year, after the state budget. A half-dozen states have adopted laws to overhaul out-of-network billing, but New Jersey has postponed further debate until sometime in 2017.
In this video, recorded at NJ Spotlight's January 27th roundtable in Trenton, NJ, legislative and industry leaders discuss the issue and possible public-policy solutions.
Panelists: Maura Collinsgru, Healthcare Program Director, New Jersey Citizen Action
Neil Eicher, Vice President of Government Relations & Policy,
New Jersey Hospital Association
Larry Lewis Jr., Director, Government Affairs, Aetna
Ev Liebman, Associate State Director for Advocacy, AARP
Linda Schwimmer, President and CEO,New Jersey Health Care
Sen. Joseph Vitale (D-Middlesex), New Jersey State Legislature
Moderator: Lilo Stainton, Healthcare Writer, NJ Spotlight