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Michigan legislature passes surprise medical billing legislation

The Michigan Senate passed surprise medical billing legislation that would remove patients from surprise billing disputes and would pay out-of-network providers from a patient's insurer, Crain's Detroit Business reports.

What you should know:

1. The bill was debated in the state legislature for more than a year. Michigan's House had originally passed bills that would've banned the practice outright and reimbursed providers equal to 125 percent of Medicare.

2. The Senate version eliminated the straight ban, but included a fee schedule that would be 150 percent of Medicare's rate or the median in-network rate, whichever is greater.

3. The Senate bill must now pass the House. It could be on Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's desk for consideration as soon as November.

4. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan representative Andy Hetzel said the payer supported the bill, a sentiment shared by Michigan Association of Health Plans Executive Director Dominick Pallone.

5. Michigan would follow the lead of states like New York, New Hampshire and Oregon if it passes the surprise billing legislation.

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