Mid-Atlantic Health Law TOPICS
Maryland Regulatory News - Winter 2023
1. The Maryland Health Services Cost Review Commission (HSCRC) was tasked with drafting new regulations to implement changes to the State law that requires hospitals to provide financial assistance with respect to bills for services provided to low-income patients. The new law requires hospitals to provide income-based payment plans to all patients, regardless of the patient’s income. At its October 2023 meeting, the HSCRC approved a new draft of the guidelines to be published in the Maryland Register following which the HSCRC will be accepting written public comments on the draft guidelines. The new draft permits hospitals to offer both income-based and non-income-based payment plans, prohibits limiting the provision of free care to the hospital’s service area residents, and clarifies that financial assistance cannot be limited to urgent and emergent care.
2. The Maryland Department of Labor released updated information in September about the implementation of the new Family and Medical Leave insurance that will be required to be provided by all employers with 15 or more workers. The State Plan (an alternative to purchasing private insurance) will require a contribution rate of 0.9% of covered wages and will be equally divided between employees and employers contributing to the State Plan. Employers choosing to purchase private insurance or to self-insure may not require their employees to contribute more than they would be required to contribute to the State Plan (0.45% of covered wages).