Biden-Harris Administration Announces Steps to Protect Consumers and Improve Ground Ambulance Billing Practices Through No Surprises Act Implementation
Agency is Opening Application Period to Join New Advisory Committee
Today, the Biden-Harris Administration unveiled details about the establishment of a new federal advisory committee, the Ground Ambulance and Patient Billing (GAPB) Advisory Committee. As mandated through the No Surprises Act, the GAPB Advisory Committee will be charged with providing recommendations to the Secretaries of Health and Human Services (HHS), Labor, and Treasury on ways to protect consumers from exorbitant charges and balance billing when using ground ambulance services.
“No one should have to tap into their life savings to access life-saving care,” said Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra. “With today’s new advisory committee announcement, we will have the opportunity to engage with partners, experts and others, to better assess the issue of surprise medical billing tied to ambulance trips and work to better protect patients.”
“Protecting people from devastating surprise medical bills, especially for something beyond their control like needing an ambulance during an emergency, is a top priority for the Biden-Harris Administration,” said CMS Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure. “We invite subject matter experts to apply for membership on the GAPB Advisory Committee and provide thoughtful recommendations that will help prevent balance billing and alleviate burdensome financial challenges for consumers.”
Individuals interested in serving on the GAPB Advisory Committee may either self-nominate or be nominated by an organization. Applications must be submitted within 20 days of the publication date of the Federal Register notice. An announcement naming the selected committee members will be published after the nomination period closes and the selection process is complete. The GAPB Advisory Committee will meet at least twice, and its final report will be issued not later than 180 days after the initial meeting.
The GAPB Advisory Committee’s recommendations will be issued to the Secretaries of Health and Human Services, Labor, and Treasury, in addition to various House and Senate committees. Its recommendations are expected to help inform policy changes that will improve the disclosure of charges and fees for ground ambulance services, better inform consumers of insurance options for such services, and protect consumers from balance billing, and that address steps that may be taken by proposals for legislation and enforcement at the state and federal levels.
Learn more about the GAPB Advisory Committee and the Federal Register Notice.