RALEIGH — Last week, State Treasurer Dale Folwell praised the NC Senate for the passage of Senate Bill 321, the Medical Deweaponization Act.
“I want to thank the members of the North Carolina Senate who unanimously passed this bipartisan bill,” Folwell said in a statement. “It could be a significant accomplishment by the General Assembly making a generational difference in the lives of so many families faced with financial ruin due to medical debt.”
Throughout his tenure, Folwell has been active in reducing medical costs for State Health Plan enrollees as well as expenses for North Carolinians in general through calls for increased transparency in pricing by health care providers.
“I am particularly grateful to Sens. Joyce Krawiec, Carl Ford and Jim Burgin for their leadership as primary sponsors in the Senate. They represent the very best in public service with their steadfast support of this pro-family, anti-poverty, consumer protection measure,” said Folwell. “Citizens, including widows and widowers, shouldn’t fear getting medical services because of medical billing.”
The bill passed unanimously on May 1 and was sent to the House Rules Committee.
Senate Bill 321 would help families with mounting medical debt collections by requiring large health care facilities to provide patients with a financial assistance policy and would prevent the use of excessive collection methods.
The bill also would require health care providers to publish price information on their websites and block the charging of facility fees for certain identified procedures. Health care facilities and medical debt collectors violating those provisions could be sued by a consumer.