WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee passed Rep. Michelle Steel’s (CA-45) legislation, the Hospital and ASC Price Transparency Act, to require hospitals to make their prices public and increase competition, within the Health Care Price Transparency Act.
The Hospital and ASC Price Transparency Act codifies existing hospital price transparency rules with key improvements, requires hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers to publish prices for at least 300 shoppable services in a way that is easily accessible to the consumer, and raises the mandated fine for non-compliance.
“While roughly one in four hospitals are following current hospital price transparency rules, only seven hospitals out of 6,000 nationwide have ever been fined for noncompliance,” said Steel. “Many of those who do publish their prices in confusing formats or file types that make it difficult for anyone to access. The Hospital and ASC Price Transparency Act puts pressure on hospitals to end this practice and ensures that price transparency data is more accessible for patients and employers. I am grateful to see this legislation included in the Health Care Price Transparency Act and pass in the Ways and Means Committee. I urge my colleagues to join me in supporting this common sense legislation to lower health care costs for all Americans.”
“Patients and families have a right to know how much a procedure or visit will cost before they see a doctor,” said Ways and Means Committee Chairman Jason Smith (MO-08). “Rep. Michelle Steel’s Hospital and ASC Price Transparency Act, approved today by the Ways and Means Committee, codifies and builds upon existing, historic efforts to ensure hospital price transparency. Thanks to Rep. Steel, patients would now have access to true prices for hundreds of medical services used every day. Ways and Means Republicans are focused on lowering costs for patients through proven tools like price transparency and hospital competition.”
The “Hospital and ASC Price Transparency Act:”
- Codifies existing hospital price transparency rules with key improvements.
- Requires hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers (ASCs) to publish gross and cash prices for all items and services and requires publication of prices for at least 300 shoppable services or a consumer-friendly price estimator tool
- Requires hospitals and ASCs to certify the accuracy and completeness of estimates provided through a consumer-friendly estimator tool.
- Requires HHS to review each hospital and ASC’s website at least once every three years.
- CMS may issue civil monetary penalties (CMPs) of up to $300 per day for hospitals with fewer than 30 beds, and an annual maximum of $2 million for hospitals with more than 30 beds.
- CMS may increase CMPs to an annual maximum of $3 million for hospitals that are repeatedly and “knowingly and willfully” noncompliant.
- CMS may waive CMPs for facilities located in rural and underserved areas if it would result in significant hardship, including reducing patient access to care.
- Requires HHS to post hospital compliance status on the CMS Care Compare website.
- Reduces existing duplicative and burdensome reporting requirements by eliminating the current regulatory requirement that hospitals publish minimum and maximum insurer-negotiated rates and allows for discretion as to the requirement for hospitals and ASs to publish insurer-negotiated rates.
- Requires HHS to provide technical assistance to hospitals and ASCs.
Effective January 1, 2026.
Read the full bill text here.