S.1895: Lower Health Care Costs Act

Overview

The Lower Health Care Costs Act (S. 1895) would prevent patients with health insurance from facing high charges when they unexpectedly receive treatment or services from an out-of-network provider, including from air ambulances. Payment disputes between insurers and doctors would be resolved by setting payments at the median in-network rate.

Additional provisions of the bill include:
1) Raising the age to buy tobacco and electronic cigarettes from 18 to 21.
2) Allowing generic drugmakers to sue brand-name companies for not providing samples
3) Barring generic drugmakers from using tactics to keep other generics off the market.
4) Banning “spread pricing,” where pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) charge an insurer more for a drug than what they paid a pharmacy for that drug.
5)Prohibiting insurance contracts that restrict disclosures about costs or that have anticompetitive terms.
6) Extending public health programs that expire at the end of fiscal 2019, including funding for community health centers.

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Our Stance

Watching

Priority

Medium

Bill Number

S.1895

Date Introduced

June 19, 2019

Committee

Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee

Bill Status

Out of Committee

Sponsor