State Capital Briefs (Morning Edition): Tuesday, March 21
The News Service of Florida
House members continued moving forward Tuesday with a plan that would give patients a cut of the savings if they can find health-care services at a lower cost than what insurers would ordinarily pay. The bill (HB 449), sponsored by Rep. Paul Renner, R-Palm Coast, calls for "shared savings" on several types of non-emergency services, such as laboratory services, surgical procedures, physical and occupational therapy and radiology services. Under the bill, health insurers would be required to provide information about the contracted amounts they pay for services. If customers then can find services at lower costs, insurers would be required to share savings. The House Government Operations & Technology Appropriations Subcommittee approved the bill Tuesday, following approvals by two other House panels. Wences Troncoso, vice president and general counsel of the Florida Association of Health Plans, raised a series of concerns about the bill, including that it could drive people to seek low-cost health providers who could affect quality of care. The bill, however, has support from free-market groups such as Americans for Prosperity and the James Madison Institute.