Georgia has been active in healthcare price transparency legislation. In the 2017 legislative session, the legislature passed a legislation regulating pharmacy benefits managers (PBMs) to promote pharmaceutical price transparency. However, the state’s efforts at providing consumer protection from surprise billing failed in 2017 (SB 8 and HB 799) and again in 2018 (HB 678 and SB 359). Meanwhile, given changes in the healthcare landscape, the Senate passed a resolution to create a Study Committee to reform the state’s Certificate of Need laws to achieve better outcomes at a lower cost. The House also adopted a resolution recognizing the importance of telehealth as a tool to improve health care access in Georgia.
Separately, we have our eye on provider markets in the state. Several Georgia rural hospitals have closed in the past four years, indicating a crisis of access for low-income and underserved residents in non-urban areas. In addition, a merger challenge by the FTC against Hospital Authority of Albany-Dougherty County and Phoebe Putney Health System went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. The FTC ultimately reached a consent agreement concerning the acquisition, imposing various antitrust restrictions.
2020 Legislative Session: 1/13/2020 - 3/27/2020 (2019-2020 term). *Current session bill updates are ongoing. Check back weekly for updates.