DENVER — Colorado’s Hospital Discounted Care law will go into effect on Sept. 1, which will require all hospitals to make medical bills more affordable for low to moderate-income Coloradans.
Under House Bill 21-1198, all hospitals in the state are required to:
- Screen patients to see if they qualify for help paying their bills.
- Inform patients of their rights.
- Offer discounts and affordable payment plans on hospital care to patients who qualify based on their income.
- Take certain steps before sending an unpaid hospital bill to collections.
“These are the protections Coloradans deserve from our hospitals to be able to get the care they need with more reasonable costs,” said Adam Fox, Deputy Director of the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative. “…This law helps ensure people can get the hospital care they need with more peace of mind.”
Both insured and uninsured patients can benefit from the Hospital Discounted Care law. However, insured patients must request screening for Hospital Discounted Care in order to access discounts, according to the Colorado Center on Law and Policy. This makes it extremely important that Coloradans know their new rights. People of all immigration statuses can qualify for discounts as well.
“No one should face financial ruin because they or a loved one needed medical care. These patient protections bring us that much closer to achieving that reality in Colorado,” said Julia Char Gilbert, Connelly Policy Advocate at Colorado Center on Law and Policy.
The Colorado Consumer Health Initiative (CCHI), Colorado Center on Law and Policy (CCLP) and Vedra Law have partnered to create a fact sheet and guidebook for patients to understand the new rights afforded to them under this law. Those resources can be found here.