Healthcare News

What Does the New Patient’s Bill of Rights Mean for Health Care Workers?

On June 22, the White House released a Patient’s Bill of Rights, which is actually a group of regulations aimed at helping patients find affordable health insurance. While most of the media focus has been on how these new regulations will help patients, there are measures that will be beneficial to the business of healthcare. By this, I mean that individuals will have a greater ability to choose and visit the healthcare provider they want. With fewer limits, these providers should see an increase in business which will allow them to retain, and possibly even gain, employees. With the new regulations, there should be an increase in the demand for health care workers from all fields and at all levels of experience.

The first regulation that will benefit the healthcare industry allows the insured to choose any primary provider that accepts their insurance. This is great news for primary care physicians and their staff. Instead of being discounted immediately because they are not on the approved list of providers, they will instead be able to market themselves aggressively based on their effectiveness and compassion.

Another regulation allows the insured to choose any emergency room without having to pay a higher co-payment regardless of whether the selected ER facility is out of network. This can potentially help hospitals increase revenue through ER visits if their ER is aggressively marketed as the best choice for local residents.

Finally, there are two regulations that will increase the pool of insured individuals. One prohibits insurance companies from excluding children under the age of 19 from coverage due to pre-existing conditions. Children with pre-existing conditions typically require a great deal of medical care. When parents were unable to insure these children that care was often forgone or if it was acquired the parents would be unable to pay the entire bill. Having these children insured means the providers will be able to treat more of the children and will be compensated for that treatment. The other regulation removes the lifetime limits on policies that are issued on or after September 23, 2010. For many, this means that expensive treatment that may prolong their lives will continue. Previously, patients who were suffering from terminal diseases such as cancer would either be forced to stop treatment, or they would be unable to pay for the continued treatment they were receiving.

All of these new regulations are great for those who have insurance, but they are also a boon to the healthcare industry. The resolutions will generate a larger pool of patients who are able to afford treatment and it will increase their choice in physicians and facilities. This is great news for those who work in the healthcare industry. How do you think these resolutions will affect your job prospects?

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