November 16, 2023

Lawmakers Demand Administration Follow the Law to End Surprise Medical Billing

The Republican members serving on the U.S. House Committee on Ways and Means sternly demanded in a Nov. 9 letter that the Biden administration follow lawmakers’ clear intent in implementing the No Surprises Act (NSA), legislation passed in 2020 to protect patients from surprise medical bills.

Lawmakers told Xavier Becerra, secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Janet Yellen, secretary of the U.S. Department of Treasury , and Julie Su, acting secretary of the U.S. Department of Labor that the independent dispute resolution (IDR) process established by the administration’s rulemaking is failing to fulfill Congress’ intent of the law, and also acknowledged the multiple court challenges to the NSA brought by the medical community, including the American College of Radiology® (ACR®), that the government has lost.

The letter follows a Sept. 19 hearing the committee held on the fallout from flawed implementation of the NSA. ACR submitted feedback to the committee on recently issued guidance related to the IDR fee structure, as well as barriers to accessing the IDR process, batching, and the need for reasonable and timely payment.

While new guidance from the implementing federal agencies has addressed some of ACR’s concerns, the College is appreciative of the engagement by Congress and will continue work with both the administration and policymakers to ensure the NSA’s IDR process is accessible to radiologists.

For more information, contact Ashley Walton, ACR Government Affairs Director.