As cases of COVID-19 continue to spike in Florida and around the country, it is more important than ever that patients who need healthcare get it. And with more bad economic news due to the virus threat around every corner, it’s also important that patients aren’t saddled with crippling medical bills.
But those who rely on a United Healthcare insurance plan are in for a rude awakening. They could find that their doctor is no longer in United’s coverage network because United recently cancelled all their contracts with Mednax, a large physician group. Now that these doctors are out of the United Healthcare network, a policyholder treated by one of them could be facing a surprise medical bill.
Congress needs to adopt Independent Dispute Resolution (IDR) as a solution to surprise medical bills. Under IDR, an independent mediator would take the place of patients at the bargaining table. Any billing dispute between out-of-network doctors and insurance companies would go through an arbitration system, similar to what the major leagues use for player salary disputes. Patients would not get any more surprise medical bills, and doctors get would get their fair share of reimbursement for their services.