The National Health Council appreciates the opportunity to comment on the proposed changes to the Medicare Outpatient Prospective Payment System and Ambulatory Surgical Center Payment System (the Proposed Rule). Our comments focus primarily on the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS’) proposal on price transparency of hospital standard charges.
Founded in 1920, the NHC brings diverse organizations together to forge consensus and drive patient-centered health policy. The NHC provides a united voice for the more than 160 million people with chronic diseases and disabilities and their family caregivers. Made up of more than 125 diverse national health-related organizations and businesses, the NHC's core membership includes the nation’s leading patient advocacy organizations, which control its governance and policy-making process. Other members include health-related associations and nonprofit organizations including the provider, research and family caregiver communities; and businesses representing biopharmaceutical, device, diagnostic, generic, and payer organizations.
The NHC fully supports policy changes and refinements that increase the availability and accessibility of relevant information to enable treatment decisions that best align with each patient’s health care needs and goals. For people with chronic diseases and disabilities, the cost of health care can be an important factor in determining what care to receive and where to receive it. We therefore appreciate CMS’ continuing efforts toward greater system-wide transparency for both the cost and quality of care.