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HHS Secretary Alex Azar Demands Increased Healthcare Price Transparency

Modern Healthcare writes HHS Secretary Alex Azar has demanded healthcare providers and drugmakers tell patients what a service or product will cost before they receive it. Increasing price transparency was part of a “four shifts” agenda Azar laid out for transforming U.S. healthcare into a more competitive, value-based system that costs less. But many providers and pharmaceutical companies have resisted even while saying they support the concept, arguing it’s the job of health plans to tell their members how much they will owe. In addition, experts say the cost-reduction potential of greater price transparency is limited because only a small percentage of total U.S. healthcare spending is on services for which patients truly can comparison shop.

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