WASHINGTON DC (November 15, 2019) — Senate Finance Committee Chairman Charles "Chuck" Grassley (R-IA) today released the following statement regarding the Trump administration’s announcement of two new major rules requiring more price-transparency in health-care.
“If they’ve got nothing to hide or be ashamed of, then hospitals and health-insurance companies should welcome these rules. If the price of a product causes embarrassment or puts a company at a disadvantage, that probably means they should lower their prices. President Trump, Secretary [of Health and Human Services, Alex] Azar and Administrator [of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Seema] Verma should all be applauded for shining a light on health-care industries that are all too often shrouded in secrecy,” Sen Grassley said. “Being able to compare prices online will give Americans the ability to make an informed choice about what’s best for them and their families. I hear opponents of transparency in health-care argue that giving patients more information will only lead to confusion and that their pricing-schemes are more complicated than a price-tag. And that’s exactly the problem. These reforms are long overdue and will force insurance companies and hospitals to be more accountable to patients.”
“The Trump administration’s willingness to take on these entrenched and powerful industries is yet another sign that this president is willing to take the big steps needed to help Americans and improve health care in this country. These actions are in line what I’ve been working on in Congress with Sen [Dick] Durbin to require pharmaceutical companies to disclose the price of their prescription drugs on their TV ads. I’ve also been working with Ranking Member [Ron] Wyden on bipartisan legislation to lower the cost of prescription drugs, and a big part of that is adding much-needed transparency to the system, particularly pharmacy benefit-managers and the pharmaceutical industry.”
Sen Grassley has long been an advocate for greater transparency in the health-care industry. Sen Grassley is the author of The Physician Payments Sunshine Act, which requires public disclosure of payments between drug companies and doctors and has introduced legislation to apply the same disclosure rules to nurse practitioners and physician assistants.