Earlier this week, members of the Senate Committee on Health took public testimony on Senate Bill 559
, legislation that would clarify Wisconsin law and eliminate an existing barrier that causes some health care providers to not offer certain prompt-pay discounts to their patients. This legislation’s provisions recognize, but also create limitations around, prompt-pay discounts to provide regulatory consistency between state and federal requirements, removes a potential barrier to more efficient health care operations, and is clearly a benefit to patients that can help lower overall costs.
WHA Chief Operating Officer and Senior Vice President of Finance Brian Potter testified in front of the Senate Committee on Health on Oct. 12 and said this legislation could create a possible “win-win situation for both providers, who could improve their collection process saving them time and expense, and for patients who elect to pay promptly by saving them money on their bill.”
Potter was joined by UW Health Vice President of Revenue Cycle Abby Abongwa, who testified, “We believe as patients contribute a growing portion of our revenues, it is not only in their best interest but also in UW Health’s best interest to find ways to make care affordable.” Abongwa added, “Offering a prompt-pay discount that bears a reasonable relationship to the amount of avoided collection costs serves to benefit patients and providers, creating a better balance between patient satisfaction and our organization’s need to remain a viable business.”
The legislation was passed unanimously by the Assembly in 2019 and was unanimously supported in Senate Committee, but failed to pass the Senate last session, like many other pieces of legislation, due to the floor calendar ending during the COVID-19 pandemic.
To contact your lawmakers in support of this legislation, please utilize the WHA Hospital Education & Advocacy Team (HEAT) Action Center or contact WHA Vice President of Advocacy Kari Hofer