Female doctor speaking with patient in hospital bed

UPDATE: Patients have the right to written estimates before getting their health care.

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Patricia Kelmar
Director, Health Care Campaigns

Author: Patricia Kelmar

Director, Health Care Campaigns

 

Started on staff: 1986-1991; 2020
B.A., magna cum laude, Boston College; J.D., high honors, George Washington University Law School

Patricia directs the health care campaign work for U.S. PIRG and provides support to our state offices for state-based health initiatives. Her prior roles include senior director of health policy with the National Consumers League, senior policy advisor at NJ Health Care Quality Institute, and consumer advocate at NJPIRG. She serves on the board of the Patient and Caregiver Engagement Advisory Group for the National Quality Forum. Patricia enjoys walks along the Potomac and sharing her love of books with her friends and family around the world.

Until this year, the uninsured and other patients paying for medical care out of their own pocket (“self-payers”) could rarely get a cost estimate for their planned medical care. They were, however, expected to pay the bill after they received it. But now, under the No Surprises Act, physicians and health care facilities are required to give an advance estimate of charges. In addition, if the final charges are more than $400 above the written estimate, patients can dispute the additional charges. Learn more about your rightsunder this new law, so you can be better prepared for the medical bills you will be asked to pay.  

Photo credit: @nci on Unsplash

Patricia Kelmar
Director, Health Care Campaigns

Author: Patricia Kelmar

Director, Health Care Campaigns

 

Started on staff: 1986-1991; 2020
B.A., magna cum laude, Boston College; J.D., high honors, George Washington University Law School

Patricia directs the health care campaign work for U.S. PIRG and provides support to our state offices for state-based health initiatives. Her prior roles include senior director of health policy with the National Consumers League, senior policy advisor at NJ Health Care Quality Institute, and consumer advocate at NJPIRG. She serves on the board of the Patient and Caregiver Engagement Advisory Group for the National Quality Forum. Patricia enjoys walks along the Potomac and sharing her love of books with her friends and family around the world.