On December 28, 2020, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (“Appropriations Act”) was passed into law. The Appropriations Act included the No Surprises Act (“Act”), which seeks to protect patients from surprise medical bills in situations where patients have little or no control over who provides their care, including nonemergency services provided by out-of-network providers at in-network facilities, emergency services provided by out-of-network providers and facilities, and air ambulance services. The Act, a rare piece of bipartisan, bicameral legislation, has been a long time in the making, and has undergone multiple iterations. Particularly during the public health emergency, the issue of surprise medical bills is especially pertinent, as the COVID-19 pandemic has increased the occurrence of surprise bills in a time where people are less likely to be able to shoulder the unexpected costs.
Continue Reading No Surprises Act Comes as a Surprise – Consolidated Appropriations Act Includes New Restrictions on Surprise Bills

On February 16, 2017, Representative Sam Johnson (R-Texas) introduced a bill to the House of Representatives that brings to the forefront an ongoing and contentious debate regarding the propriety of physician-owned hospitals.  If adopted as proposed, the Patient Access to Higher Quality Health Care Act of 2017 would repeal sections of the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) that, since 2011, have effectively prevented new physician-owned hospitals from participating in the Medicare program.
Continue Reading Physician-Owned Hospitals: Back in the Legislative Saddle Again or “I’m just a bill, I am only a bill.”