CHA News Article

FAQs Address Requirement to Publish Internet List of Standard Charges
Hospitals must comply by Jan. 1

Responding to a request for additional clarification from many hospitals around the country, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) posted frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the requirement that hospitals make public a list of their standard charges (e.g., a hospital chargemaster). As outlined in the federal fiscal year 2019 inpatient prospective payment system final rule, hospitals must publish that information via the internet in a machine-readable format. 

The FAQs address the definition of machine-readable and note this policy impacts all hospitals — none are exempt. CHA interprets the definition of a hospital to include freestanding, long-term acute care hospitals and inpatient rehabilitation facilities. Hospitals have until January 1, 2019, to comply; the statute does not articulate a mechanism for federal enforcement. Although CHA continues to believe that California state law currently meets CMS’ requirements, all hospitals should review their current policies to ensure compliance with both federal and state transparency laws.