A raft of new rules took effect Sept. 1, 2007, requiring medical practices to reveal specific billing information to patients, including the following:
- All physicians must maintain written policies regarding any discounts they provide for medical services to uninsured or indigent patients, what interest rate - if any - they applied to billed charges not paid by a third-party payer, and how they will handle patient complaints related to such charges. Physicians also must post notices in their offices informing patients of the policies.
- Some physicians must disclose a variety of information when billing insured patients for out-of-network services.
- Physicians who bill any patient for anatomical pathology services they did not personally perform or supervise must provide an itemized statement of charges.
Details are available on the TMA Web site. You'll also find links to updated office policies that comply with the law and to a downloadable notice ( PDF ) you can print and post in your office.