NJ For Health Care is dedicated to common sense, consumer friendly solutions to ensure every New Jerseyan can get the health care they need, when they need it at a price they can afford.
Since the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was implemented in January of 2014, hundreds of thousands of New Jerseyans have enrolled in health coverage.
But our work is not done. We need to continue to build on the success of the ACA by expanding access to quality, affordable health care for all hardworking New Jersey families.
Join us! We all have a role to play in making health care more accessible and affordable.
ACTION! Labor, Business, and Consumer Groups Call on NJ Legislative Leaders to Pass the Out-of-Network Consumer Protection Bill
Thirty-four groups, including major health care consumer groups, unions and employers who provide coverage, sent letters (LINKS BELOW) on August 15, 2016 to Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto and Senate President Stephen Sweeney.
The groups call on both leaders to support the Out-of-Network Consumer Protection, Cost Containment, Transparency and Accountability Act (A1952 / S1285) that has been stalled in the legislature. The letters call for leadership to support the legislation, which will save New Jerseyans nearly $1 billion annually and result in an estimated $140 million in savings to the State Health Benefits Plan.
The delay is denying New Jersey consumers the protections they need, and costing consumers and those that provide insurance coverage for their workers millions in unnecessary costs.
- Media Release: Labor, Business, and Consumer Groups Call On NJ Legislative Leaders To Pass The Out-of-Network Consumer Protection Bill — August 15, 2016.
- Coalition Sign-on Letter to Senate President Sweeney — Support S1285.
- Coalition Sign-on Letter to Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto — Support A1952.
EVENT September 9, 2016 — Building A Consumer Health Care Movement For 2017 And Beyond
Friday, September 9, 2016,
8:00 am — 3:00 pm
The Conference Center at Mercer
1200 Old Trenton Road
Princeton Junction, NJ
$25.00 per person
Continental breakfast & lunch provided
What are the next steps in health care reform? Join coalition partners and invited guest speakers to discuss
Issues and strategies for building a consumer health reform movement in the next decade.
Topics and Panel Discussions will include:
- Getting to Universal Coverage: Federal and State Opportunities
- Consumer Centered Solutions: Improving Access & Quality While Controlling Costs
- Next Steps: Building a Consumer Movement
New Report on the Huge Cost of Surprise Out-of-Network Bills
New Jersey Policy Perspective and the NJ for Health Care Coalition, a diverse collection of organizations which represent health care consumers, have released a report, "Time for Affordability" (click here), that illustrates the huge fiscal impact that surprise out-of-network bills are having on consumers and health care costs in New Jersey.
The report estimates 168,000 New Jerseyans receive out-of-network medical bills each year, with the total owed by these consumers estimated at $420 million. That averages out to about $2,500 out-of-network bill per consumer. About 71 percent of consumers who received these surprise medical bills report being unaware the provider was out-of-network.
- Press Release: "Consumer Coalition Issues New Report on the Huge Cost of Surprise Out-of-Network Bills" (click here).
- Report: "Time for Affordability" (click here).
In the News
- "Report: Out-Of-Network Care Drives Premiums In N.J. Up By Nearly $200" (click here) .
- "Surprise Out-Of-Network Med Bills Cost NJ $1B".
TAKE ACTION! Support the "Out of Network Transparency Act"
It seems no one escapes surprise medical bills these days.
We've all been there, especially when facing a serious illness. Mystery bills.
The "Out of Network Transparency Act" will expand current protections to more consumers in more situations.
It will ban out of network surprise billing in emergency situations and when receiving care at an "in-network" facility. Where there is no "choice" for an "in-network" provider, consumers will be protected. But there's something else.
By limiting out of network charges in our health care system, everyone will benefit from lower health care costs. And that is something we can all agree is needed.
But the opposition from highly paid specialists and for-profit hospital owners is threatening to stop the bill from becoming law.
UPDATED Want to know more about the issue? Check out our Out-of-Network policy paper and principles:
- Surprise Medical Bills:
What they are and how to stop them, while ensuring access to needed services and adequate payment to providers (click here for PDF).
- NJ for Health Care Out-of-Network Principles (click here).
- Media Release: Victims of Surprise Medical Bills Join with Advocates to Issue New Report (click here for PDF).
TAKE ACTION! CLICK HERE to RSVP to join us at the Statehouse on June 16 as we lobby legislators to support passage of Out-of-Network Protection and put an end to surprise medical bills now!
TAKE ACTION! CLICK HERE to tell your state Senator and Assembly members to vote "yes" on this bill and do everything they can to ensure it becomes law.
NEED HEALTH INSURANCE?
|The Affordable Care Act Can Help Get You Covered
Do you or someone you know need health care coverage?
More than a quarter-million New Jersey residents now have health insurance policies they purchased through the federal website set up by the Affordable Care Act.
We are working with partners in communities across the state to connect more New Jerseyans to coverage.
The annual open enrollment period is from November 1 to January 31. But those who experience life changes throughout the year and those eligible for New Jersey's Medicaid program, NJ Family Care, can apply all year round. Visit our website, CoverNJ.org to find out more your coverage options and how to enroll.
Or, you can contact New Jersey Citizen Action's ACA Enrollment Office to speak directly with one of our enrollment counselors.
165 Halsey Street (between Bank Street & West Market)
Newark, NJ 07102
Map and Directions
973-273-0315 or 1-888-829-3711 — Hablamos Español
Campaign to Protect Community Hospitals
Over the past decade, New Jersey has lost far too many local community hospitals, the place of last resort health care for the poor and underserved.
Under financial stress, these community hospitals, once committed to meeting community needs, are bought up by for-profit companies and transformed into moneymaking ventures.
They make dramatic cuts to nursing and other support staff, and take the hospital out of insurance networks so they can charge anything they want — for even routine and simple services.
Companies like CarePoint in Hudson County and California-based Prime Healthcare Service have gotten rich with these practices, to the detriment of local communities, driving up the cost of health care for everyone in New Jersey.
New Jersey Citizen Action, convener of the NJ for Health Care coalition, works with our partners in the Campaign for Community Health Care to fight the sale of community hospitals to for-profit health care chains that employ these anti-consumer and anti-community practices, and bring these important issues to light.
In alliance with nurses and other hospital medical staff, local community leaders, and community residents, we have demanded that the state Department of Health and the NJ Attorney General enforce pro-community pro-consumer conditions before approving any sale of a community hospital.
These demands include pledging to keep the hospital and all its services open and available, maintaining safe staffing levels as well as keeping the hospital within insurance network.
As we see more New Jerseyans with health insurance thanks to the Affordable Care Act, it is crucial that local hospitals be in-network to ensure care remains affordable.
As more hospital sales and mergers take place, and more for-profit hospital companies such as CarePoint and Prime Healthcare Services take over hospital care in New Jersey, we and our partners will continue to fight for stronger consumer-friendly requirements in hospital operation and closer oversight to ensure that these requirements are met.
We will continue to fight for strong and adequate safe-staffing legislation as well as consumer protections against outrageous billing from out-of-network billing by these hospitals and providers.
Community health in New Jersey is too important. And the health of our communities is not for sale! For more information contact India Larrier at firstname.lastname@example.org.