Just a Quarter of Hospitals Fully Compliant with Price Transparency Rule

A new report found that just about 25 percent of hospitals are fully compliant with a federal price transparency rule that requires all hospitals to post their prices online in an accessible and searchable format.

The report, published by the Patient Rights Advocate on Monday, said that it surveyed the websites of 2,000 large hospitals across the United States to determine whether they were compliant with the federal Hospital Transparency Rule that was implemented at the start of 2021. The report said that about 75 percent were not compliant with the new rule, and even though the majority posted files, “the widescale noncompliance” was “due to most hospitals’ files being incomplete, illegible, or not having prices clearly associated with both payer and plan.”

The report also found that 6 percent of hospitals had not posted any standard charges files and therefore were in total noncompliance.

“This noncompliance obstructs the ability of patients, employer and union purchasers, and technology developers to comparatively analyze prices, make informed decisions, and have evidence to remedy errors, overcharges and fraud,” the report reads.

The report also said that none of the hospitals from the country’s largest hospital system, HCA Healthcare, were in compliance.

“This blatant obfuscation of prices and flouting of the rule demonstrates that implementation and enforcement efforts must be rigorously examined and markedly strengthened to improve compliance, enable technology innovators to parse the pricing data, and empower American consumers with upfront prices,” the report reads.

The report did show an increase of compliant hospitals from previous reports released by the Patient Rights Advocate. In August 2022, just 16 percent of hospitals were compliant with the new rules, according to the report.