Congressional hearing on price transparency and competition kicks off a bipartisan effort to expose the broken health care system - Families Usa Skip to Main Content
03.28.2023 / Statement

Congressional hearing on price transparency and competition kicks off a bipartisan effort to expose the broken health care system

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Families USA Executive Director Frederick Isasi issued the following statement today on the House Energy and Commerce Committee Subcommittee on Health hearing being held today, “Lowering Unaffordable Costs: Examining Transparency and Competition in Health Care”:

“Our health care system is in crisis. Almost half of all Americans have skipped medical care due to cost. One third of the country has reported that covering their medical costs makes it harder for them to secure food and housing. And more than 40 percent of American adults – 100 million people – face medical debt. Americans deserve better.

“The good news is Congress can take meaningful steps to align the interests of families with the interests of the health care sector, and in doing so fix a broken system that currently incentives high-cost, low-value care when it should instead be prioritizing their health.

“Today’s hearing highlights a growing bipartisan effort to expose the huge variation and fundamentally irrational ways Americans are charged for health-related goods and services, including hospital stays, surgical procedures, and diagnostic tests like X-rays and MRIs. It also highlights how hospital price transparency can be an important tool for revealing and stopping pricing abuses, so that our nation’s families have much greater financial security.

“Congress should seize the momentum of this hearing to immediately implement commonsense policies that rein in abusive health care prices and health industry consolidation, and make health care more affordable for everyone by:

  • Strengthening hospital price transparency rules to ensure people know what they are paying for their health care and policymakers can target future solutions accordingly;
  • Enacting site-neutral payments that make sure that the same health care service costs the same amount regardless of the kind of health care setting where that service is received; and
  • Ending anticompetitive practices and clauses in health care contracting agreements, which occur in a variety of places including between providers and insurers and in clinician and health care worker employment arrangements.

“It will take all of us working together, across political parties, from rural and urban communities alike, to come together to fix these challenges. But families in our nation deserve no less.”

Sophia Tripoli, director of Families USA’s Center for Affordable Whole-Person Care, testified at today’s hearing. Her testimony can be found here.