Kirsters Baish’s Opinion| On Monday, President Donald Trump put the pen to paper and signed an executive order that he labeled “the opposite of Obamacare.” The order insists that the Department of Health and Human Services make new rules that increase transparency when it comes to health care pricing.
According to the Daily Caller, “President Donald Trump signed an executive order he called ‘the opposite of Obamacare’ that directs the Department of Health and Human Services to create rules increasing transparency in health care pricing Monday.”
“We will empower patients with the information they need to search for the lowest cost and highest quality care,” the President explained while speaking at the White House on Monday afternoon. He went on to say that the goal of the executive order is to “put American patients first.”
“People have no idea how big it is. Some people say bigger than health care itself. … For too long it’s been virtually impossible for Americans to know the real price and quality of health care services and the services they receive,” he continued.
The President believes that the cost of health care will go “way, way down” with this new executive order due to anticipated HHS rules that will mandate hospitals and insurers make their negotiated rates for services public, as reported by CNBC.
HHS Secretary Alex Azar explained that the new executive order “will go down as one of the most significant steps in the long history of American health care reform” while on a Monday phone call with the media. Azar spoke of five specific points made in the order, which according to the Daily Caller “will translate into rules drafted by HHS.”
These points include:
- To require hospitals to publish prices reflecting what patients and insurers pay.
- To require health care providers and insurers to tell patients about out-of-pocket costs before they receive services.
- To simplify how federal health care programs measure quality.
- To protect patient privacy as the administration examines health care claims data.
- To direct the Treasury Department to expand how patients can use health savings accounts.
According to the Daily Caller, “Administration officials couldn’t pinpoint when the rules directed by the executive order will go into effect during a Monday phone call with reporters. Trump’s executive order comes after three major pharmaceutical companies sued his administration in federal court on June 14 over its rule requiring companies to disclose drug prices in television ads. News of the suit came just after Trump touted how his administration is working with ‘Big Pharma’ to reduce drug prices during a speech at the White House Rose Garden announcing an expansion of health reimbursement arrangements designed to help small businesses.”
Via Fox Business:
The Department of Health and Human Services will propose a regulation requiring hospitals to publicly post standard charge information within 60 days. The executive order also requires the federal agency to ask for comments on expected out-of-pocket costs for items or services in 90 days and in 180 days, respectively, deliver a report addressing who is slowing down the efforts to have those prices transparent.
Take a look at the President’s remarks: