House committee approves notifying patients of standalone ER costs

From the Post:

A Colorado House committee passed around an eye-opening document Thursday night as it debated a developing health care issue.

Stand-alone ERs have been spreading rapidly in affluent suburban Colorado neighborhoods, often in shopping malls conveniently close to home. The Denver Post exposed problems with the trend in a series of stories last year.

The Colorado Hospital Association objected that its requirements could conflict with a federal law against patient dumping, which forbids hospitals from turning away or discouraging patients who show up in emergency rooms.

The Colorado Medical Society also opposed the bill, partly on the grounds that advising emergency room patients to seek cheaper medical care could risk lives.

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