Baker Introduces Sweeping Overhaul to Health Care System

BOSTON (AP) — Gov. Charlie Baker has introduced legislation aimed at overhauling Massachusetts’ health care system by restricting how hospitals and doctors bill patients and requiring walk-in clinics to treat low-income patients on Medicaid.

The Republican governor outlined the effort Friday, saying in a statement it’s designed to lower costs and streamline health care for the future.

Baker’s legislation would outlaw “surprise” bills for emergency room care and rein in certain hospital fees.

Drug companies would be penalized for raising prices on medications by more than 2% a year over any cost adjustments for inflation.

Baker was a state health secretary and the CEO of a health insurance company before becoming governor, and has taken a special interest in the issue.

Baker says the legislation will “improve health outcomes and decrease costs over time.”

About Brian Merchant

Brian Merchant grew up in Central Massachusetts and now lives in South Dennis on the Cape. He has been part of the news team in the NewsCenter since the spring of 2014. He studied radio broadcasting at the University of Tennessee.
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