New Report Highlights Increasing Use of Facility Fees as “Clear Profit-Gambits”  

By Consumers for Quality Care, on April 24, 2024

New Report Highlights Increasing Use of Facility Fees as “Clear Profit-Gambits”  

A new report by U.S. PIRG Education Fund, a nonprofit consumer protection organization, sheds light on how facility fees are increasingly used as “clear profit-gambits” that take advantage of consumers, according to Fierce Healthcare

Hospital-owned clinics are more likely than doctor-owned clinics to charge facility fees for providing the exact same care. Hospitals have also been known to add these fees to preventive procedures, such as colonoscopies and mammograms, even though preventive care is fully covered by the Affordable Care Act (ACA).  

PIRG is all too aware that the increased prevalence of these facility fees could lead to more consumers delaying or skipping medical care for fear of falling into debt. “Unjustified facility fees only add to patients’ fear of charges they can’t avoid and might not be able to pay. With more than one-third of Americans delaying care because of cost, we need to do better,” the report says. 

The report also highlights legislation at the state level that can serve as a national model to restrict facility fees. Fifteen states have already introduced bills or passed new laws to address the increased use of these fees.  

The report concludes that facility fees have not been shown to improve the quality of care for consumers, calling these fees “dishonest” and “unjustified.” CQC urges providers to stop charging absurd facility fees and urge lawmakers to combat these predatory practices.