Listen: How the New ‘No Surprises’ Law Tackles Unexpected Medical Bills

The federal No Surprises Act, which aims to eliminate unexpected out-of-network medical bills, took effect Jan. 1, and KHN correspondents hit the airwaves to explain the new law.

KHN senior correspondent Julie Appleby appeared on NPR’s “Weekend Edition” on Sunday to give background on why the law was necessary: Surveys showed that up to 1 in 5 emergency department visits and 1 in 10 elective surgeries resulted in an unexpected, out-of-network bill.

Julie Rovner, KHN’s chief Washington correspondent and the host of KHN’s “What the Health?” podcast, joined NPR/WBUR’s “Here & Now” on Monday. Rovner detailed how the new law’s “baseball arbitration-style process” is supposed to work out billing disputes between care providers and insurers — without leaving patients on the hook.

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