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Executive Order on Health Care Price, Quality Transparency

The administration issued a June 24 executive order addressing hospital price disclosure, quality measurement, data sharing, and the expanded use of health savings accounts (HSAs).

The order specifically includes policies:

  • instructing the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to issue a proposal, within 60 days of the order, requiring hospitals to publicly post standard charge information, including charges based on negotiated rates, in a machine-readable format that is understandable and usable by consumers;
  • instructing HHS and the departments of Labor and Treasury, within 90 days, to issue advance notice of proposed rulemaking soliciting comments on a proposal requiring insurance companies and providers to supply cost of care information, including expected out-of-pocket costs, to patients before they receive care;
  • requesting that HHS and the department of Defense and Veterans Affairs develop, within 180 days, a comprehensive health quality road map to ensure a limited set of quality metrics that drive improvement across all health care programs;
  • ensuring researchers, innovators, and providers have access to de-identified health care claims data, within 180 days, in a way that protects patient privacy and security while enabling transformation of the health care marketplace through analytics to help improve quality and decrease price; and
  • directing the Department of Treasury to increase HSA options, including expanding the variety of preventive services and products covered; allowing money to be used for direct primary care arrangements and health care sharing ministries; and issuing guidance to increase the amount of funds that can carry over at the end of the year for flexible spending arrangements.

The order also directs the HHS secretary to submit a report, within 180 days, on additional steps the administration might take to implement its principles on surprise billing.

Contact Senior Director of Policy Erin O’Malley at eomalley@essentialhospitals.org or 202.585.0127 with questions.

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About the Author

Maryellen Guinan is a senior policy analyst at America's Essential Hospitals.

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