WASHINGTON — Consumer Reports is urging Congress to approve bipartisan legislation to end surprise medical bills — the Lower Health Care Costs Act — this month before lawmakers wrap up their business for the year.
The House Ways and Means Committee has released a separate proposal to address the problem. While the committee’s commitment to curbing surprise medical bills is appreciated, CR said Congress should move forward on the Lower Health Care Costs Act without delay.
Dena B. Mendelsohn, senior policy counsel for Consumer Reports, said, “The threat of surprise medical bills is well-documented and looms large over all patients. The solution has been debated at length and is well understood. Now is the time to get this critical consumer protection across the finish line. The bipartisan Lower Health Care Costs Act is the vehicle to get us there. We strongly urge Speaker Pelosi, Leader McCarthy, Senate Majority Leader McConnell, and Minority Leader Schumer to bring this up for a vote without further delay. If Congress fails to act before the end of the year, no matter how diligent a consumer is in getting insured and researching their provider network, a crippling surprise bill could be right around the corner. There is no justifiable reason for further delay.”
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Consumer Reports is an independent, nonprofit membership organization that works side by side with consumers to create a fairer, safer, and healthier world. For 80 years, CR has provided evidence-based product testing and ratings, rigorous research, hard-hitting investigative journalism, public education, and steadfast policy action on behalf of consumers’ interests. Unconstrained by advertising or other commercial influences, CR has exposed landmark public health and safety issues and strives to be a catalyst for pro-consumer changes in the marketplace. From championing responsible auto safety standards, to winning food and water protections, to enhancing healthcare quality, to fighting back against predatory lenders in the financial markets, Consumer Reports has always been on the front lines, raising the voices of consumers.