Press Release

News Release Contact: Molly Wilson 


September 20, 2022

Texas and Colorado Price Transparency Laws are Basis for ALEC Model Legislation Passed by Rep. Oliverson in Partnership with American First Policy Institute and Texas Public Policy Foundation

Austin, Texas — Texas State Representative Tom Oliverson, M.D. (R-Cypress) presented model legislation at the American Legislative Exchange Council Health and Human Services Task Force on July 28, 2022 in partnership with the America First Policy Institute’s Center for a Healthy America, Patient Rights Advocate, Gingrich360, and the Texas Public Policy Foundation. The purpose of the model policy is to require healthcare facilities to disclose prices for certain items and services provided by defined medical facilities, provide administrative penalties, and prohibit collective action of debt for noncompliant facilities.

“Healthcare costs have exploded over the last 50 years and have become unaffordable to many Americans. At the core of this issue is a lack of competition on price and overall value in the marketplace,” Dr. Oliverson said, “and by passing legislation increasing transparency around the prices healthcare facilities charge, states can allow their citizens to make the best healthcare decisions for themselves and their families.”

This model policy is based on a combination of the best policy provisions promulgated by Texas SB 1137 in the 2021 Texas legislative session and Colorado HB 1285 in the 2022 Colorado legislative session. The state-level hospital price transparency policies codify the Trump Administration’s 2019 hospital price transparency rule and strengthen the specific terms by which the rules must be created, published, and maintained.

AFPI Center for a Healthy America Chair Governor Bobby Jindal stated: “Hospital price transparency is a common-sense, market-based healthcare reform that empowers patients by improving their ability to make decisions about when and where to receive care. Health transparency policies like this one are supported by 88% of voters, and can prevent unexpected medical bills, encourage competition, and incentivize patients to shop for care. All of these benefits help put patients back in charge of healthcare.”

“Price Transparency is simply letting patients know the cost of a service or product for elective tests and procedures that are scheduled in advance,” said David Balat, Director of Right on Healthcare at the Texas Public Policy Foundation. “The recent push for making prices plain has resulted in some advancements but further compliance by larger healthcare systems is needed for meaningful change. Prices are an important signal needed for competitive forces to work and for patients to be more engaged in shopping for services that are affordable.”

Shopping has proven to be a powerful driver of value in almost every other sector of our economy, and where previously applied in healthcare, has driven down prices while simultaneously improving quality. Codifying these rules into law in individual states will ensure they are a permanent part of the healthcare landscape and will prevent their reversal through a simple executive order. Currently, only a small percentage of hospitals nationwide comply with the federal rule, but the improved enforcement mechanisms in this model legislation will ensure broadened compliance. 

For any questions, contact Molly Wilson at Molly.Wilson@House.Texas.Gov or 512.463.0661.