The hearing set for January 20 in Williams County Common Pleas Court on Ohio’s price transparency law has be rescheduled for Friday, March 17. The original restraining order preventing the law from going into effect issued by Judge J. T. Stelzer on December 23, 2016, remains in effect. During the rescheduled hearing now set for Friday, March 17, the court will decide whether to issue a preliminary injunction relative to the law.
As was reported in the December 20, 2016, edition of the Weekly Family Medicine Update, all physician and other health care organizations have stated “loudly and clearly” that the price transparency statute is unworkable and impossible to implement. The report of the Health Services Price Disclosure Study Committee is still unwritten and the rules to implement the statute are not promulgated. Fortunately, the statute contains no penalties for failing to adhere to the law.
The intent of the legislation is to require providers of health care services to offer, upon request, a good-faith cost estimate for all non-emergency services. Legislators see the need for improved health care price transparency, but don’t necessarily understand how complex and difficult it is to make it happen.”
Negotiations relative to how to amend the law to make it workable have been occurring for over a year with no agreed upon outcome to date; thus, the need for filing of the lawsuit requesting a temporary restraining order.