People like to research prices before they make a big purchase - and that goes for everything from cars to surgery. At least, that’s what Democratic Assemblymember Roger Hernandez says. He says his bill would create a website that lists costs of medical procedures, so that consumers can find the best deal.
“It’s important for consumers to be equipped with the information that will give them the power to question billing practices, to question a procedure that they feel they’re being overcharged for, and thus maybe the insurance company is being overcharged for,” Hernandez says.
The website would display the amount charged for a healthcare service, and how much was actually paid. Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones supports the idea of an online database.
“When you think about it, for every other good or service that we purchase, you can see a price list, but not medical services. And the prices vary all over the place. Even from the same medical provider,” Jones says.
Jones says there may be legal impediments to making more health pricing information publically available.
Covered California is reassuring consumers they will have health insurance through 2016 if they enroll in United Healthcare plan. United warned yesterday it may pull out of Obamacare because it’s losing money.
Governor Jerry Brown’s administration says it will continue to work on a plan to overhaul the way health insurers are taxed in California.
An increasing number of Californians are going to the doctor simply by sitting in front of their computers.
Health care workers are more likely to experience dangerous workplace situations than people in other industries. But new rules in California are designed to address the problem.
One of the highest paid California state employees’ unions has tentatively agreed to contribute a portion of members' salaries to retiree health benefits.