An Idaho businessman, Frank VanderSloot, founder and chief executive of the health care products company Melaleuca, appears to finally be ready to introduce legislation that would set limits on medical debt collection.
VanderSloot first came to attention in early 2019 with his proposal:
- Within 30 days of service, providers have submitted all bills to the patient’s insurance plan.
- Within 30 days of service, providers have provided notice of services rendered to the patient and health care facility.
- Within 60 days of service, the health care facility provides a consolidated notice to the patient.
- The health care provider sends a final bill, after insurance payment, that clearly states what is still owed.
That proposal in October of 2019 is set to be introduced into the Idaho Legislature soon.
For VanderSloot, the cause became personal when he learned that one of his employees was having her wages garnished for a medical debt. Per an article in the Idaho Post Register, "Medical Recovery Services sued to collect a debt from a Melaleuca employee that had ballooned from an original $294 bill to more than $5,000 with costs and legal fees."
Other details of VanderSloot's proposal: Collection agency legal fees would be capped at $350 for uncontested actions and $750 for contested ones.
The proposed legislation is still a work in progress, but seems similar to legislation proposed in New Jersey.
insideARM is actively tracking both proposals as they make their way through various edits, amendments, and additions.