Colorado Hospital Association Statement on Emergency Department Facility Fees

GREENWOOD VILLAGE, COLO. – Aug. 15, 2019 – In response to the Data Byte released by the Center for Improving Value in Health Care (CIVHC) on Evaluation and Management facility fees at hospital emergency departments, Colorado Hospital Association (CHA) issued this response:

“Colorado hospitals have a commitment to their communities to provide care in their emergency departments (ED) that is available 24/7 for patients’ life-threatening conditions,” said Steven J. Summer, CHA president and CEO. “Because that level of care requires more robust training, staffing and technology, we also acknowledge that the ED is often the most expensive place to seek care. That is why many hospitals are actively working to educate patients and their families about lower-cost health care options, such as urgent care and primary care, for non-life-threatening conditions that shouldn’t be treated in the ED. As noted in the 2017 CIVHC Data Byte, we should start to see more ED visits coded at the highest level if the system is working correctly, because only the sickest patients are seeking care in the ED.

“To help patients navigate the fees they may be charged after an ED visit and as part of our commitment to increased pricing transparency, most Colorado hospitals voluntarily posted their facility fees two years ago. All hospitals are now required to post this information as part of a federal regulation that took effect on Jan. 1, 2019. We appreciate this analysis by CIVHC, as it provides a comprehensive statewide view of information that was previously just available at the individual hospital-level.”

About Colorado Hospital Association

Colorado Hospital Association (CHA) is the leading voice of Colorado’s hospital and health system community. Representing more than 100 member hospitals and health systems throughout the state, CHA serves as a trusted, credible and reliable resource on health issues, hospital data and trends for its members, media, policymakers and the general public. Through CHA, Colorado’s hospitals and health systems work together in their shared commitment to improve health and health care in Colorado. Learn more at www.cha.com.

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