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Consumers for Quality Care Sends Letter to American Hospital Association, Calls for Guidance to Protect Patients from Predatory Hospital Practices

WASHINGTON – Consumers for Quality Care (CQC) today sent a letter to the American Hospital Association (AHA) expressing concern over recent reports of practices employed by hospitals around the country that are financially toxic for consumers. CQC is calling for the AHA to issue guidance to its members to ensure patients are protected against practices that leave them in severe financial distress.

“People turn to hospitals when they are desperate for care and, in many cases, experiencing emergencies. Patients shouldn’t have to worry about financial ruin as a result of emergency medical procedures or hospital visits. Unfortunately, such visits can become financially toxic as a result of hospital practices designed to maximize profits,” wrote the CQC board to the AHA.

The letter specifically points to a number of practices that needs to be addressed, including:

  • Tacking added annual interest to medical bills
  • Placing liens on patients’ homes
  • Garnishing wages
  • Seizing bank accounts
  • Neglecting to inform many patients about community benefits or charity care for which they may qualify

CQC is working to keep consumers at the forefront of the health care debate. As a part of its #HealthCareFail campaign, the group is sharing stories from consumers across America as they are struggling to deal with rising health care costs and navigate a lack of transparency in their care.

The letter can be found here. You can learn more about the #HealthCareFail campaign online at consumers4qualitycare.org/healthcarefail.

ABOUT

Consumers for Quality Care (CQC) is a coalition of advocates and former policy makers working to provide a voice for patients in the health care debate as they demand better care. CQC is led by a board of directors that includes the Honorable Donna Christensen, physician and former Member of Congress; Jim Manley, former senior advisor to Senators Edward Kennedy and Harry Reid; and Jason Resendez, community advocate and Executive Director of the LatinosAgainstAlzheimer's Coalition.


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