Post the Price, Please

OSPIRG is working to make sure consumers get to see health care prices up front.

SECRET PRICES CONTRIBUTE TO HIGH COSTS

 Recent studies show that one third of every dollar we spend on health care is wasted on something that doesn’t improve our health.[1] One reason why is that hospitals get to keep their prices a secret. As a result, medical prices are often hidden from patients, and many contain extra charges and surprising fees. Take a look at some of these examples:

IT’S TIME FOR UP FRONT PRICES

We can bring down the cost of care by getting prices up front. To that end, OSPIRG urges Oregon policymakers to take action to require hospitals to post their prices and to give patients the price of a recommended procedure in real time. It's common sense, but it will likely take big public support to overcome industry lobbyists.


 
[1] Institute of Medicine at the National Academies, Sept 2012, "Best Care at Lower Cost: The Path to Continuously Learning Health Care in America".
[2] CNN, March 2010, "Prescription for Waste" 
[3] OSPIRG blog, October 2013, "Thousand Dollar Ointment".
[4] Medicare Provider Utilization and Payment Data

Issue updates

Blog Post | Financial Reform

If the CFPB Is Weakened, Won’t the Credit Bureaus Run Amok (Again?) | Ed Mierzwinski

The CFPB is doing incredible work defending consumers. You may not know how much of that work involves cleaning up the sloppy credit bureaus. Congressional and special interest attacks on the CFPB will slow all or stop all CFPB work. It will let the bureaus run amok, again, placing your credit score and financial opportunity and job prospects at risk.

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News Release | U.S. PIRG | Public Health

New U.N. Report: We Can Feed The World Without Using Pesticides

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Blog Post | Consumer Protection

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While powerful special interests, Senators, the Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee and the White House call for dismantling the CFPB, firing its excellent director, or worse, CFPB continues to be an agency that is on the job, conducting business as usual to protect consumers. Its latest "Monthly Complaint Snapshot" is an open window into the many reasons we need a strong CFPB.

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Blog Post | Higher Ed

Consumer, Student Education Groups Defend CFPB To Congress | Chris Lindstrom

Nearly 60 student, consumer, and education groups signed on to this letter that was sent up to the Hill on Monday, February 13.  It calls for the CFPB to remain a strong, independent agency, so it can protect student loan borrowers (and taxpayers) from predatory lending tactics.

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Report | U.S. PIRG | Financial Reform

Student, Education, and Consumer Groups Defend CFPB To Congress

On February 13, nearly 60 local, state and national student advocacy, professional, consumer, educational, faith and other organizations sent a letter to Congressional leaders expressing "strong support for the crucial work the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) does on behalf of student loan borrowers." The "borrower-focused" letter also urged Congress "to ensure the agency remains well-positioned to solve borrowers’ problems, which includes protecting the Bureau’s single-Director structure and its independent funding, and maintaining Director Richard Cordray until his term ends."

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Media Hit | Tax

Group Wants More Details In Tax Data

An Oregon consumer group says that data on the state’s corporate tax subsidies needs to be more detailed to demonstrate the public good.

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Media Hit | Tax

OSPIRG Examines Tax Credits, Sees Little Benefit

Approving tax credits is a little bit like continuing to drink after you know you've had enough—it seems like a good idea at the time but can be hard to justify in the cold light of sobriety.

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Media Hit | Health Care

State of the rates

As any small business or individual who pays for health insurance can tell you, it hasn't been easy. Far from it, what with 20 percent rate hikes and a terrible economy.

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News Release | OSPIRG | Financial Reform

State, Federal Settlement of Robo-Signing Claims with Big Banks is Important First Step

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News Release | OSPIRG Foundation | Democracy

Most Super PAC Money is Funded by Less than 1% of the 1%

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Pages

Blog Post | Financial Reform

Wall Street Reform Floor Fight | David Rosenfeld

We look forward to a televised floor fight where the question Senators will need to answer is simple: ‘Are you for Wall Street, or Main Street?’

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Blog Post

Oregon legislature unanimously approves more help for homeowners | David Rosenfeld

The Oregon legislature gave final approval to an OSPIRG-supported new law that will give homeowners more tools to avoid foreclosure.

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Blog Post | Higher Ed

Wasteful student lender subsidies cut. Winner: students. | David Rosenfeld

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Blog Post | Budget, Tax

Google Government Coming to Oregon | David Rosenfeld

The Oregon Legislature gave final approval to HB 2500 this morning, which sets up a one-stop website for taxpayer spending.

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News Release | OSPIRG

OSPIRG, a statewide public interest group, released its annual scorecard today ranking public interest votes taken during the 2019 legislative session. 

Report | OSPIRG

OSPIRG compiled this scorecard as a tool for the public to know how their lawmakers voted on key public interest issues. This year, we scored the 12 bills.

News Release | U.S. PIRG

The Food and Drug Administration proposed a rule today that would require new warnings for cigarette packages that depict the health risks of smoking. 

Blog Post

The number of statewide plastic bag bans in the U.S. tripled in June, with Maine, Vermont, Connecticut and Oregon adding themselves to the list.

Blog Post

Adam Garber, the PIRG consumer watchdog, was shocked when he discovered recalled baby rockers at his infant son's day care this June.

Consumer Tips | U.S. PIRG

Deadly sleepers still in use at daycares

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Public Health | U.S. PIRG

Ban Roundup

As cancer victims hold Monsanto accountable in court, our governor should act to ban Roundup unless and until it's proven safe.

 

Antibiotics | U.S. PIRG

Another chain commits to reduce antibiotics

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Consumer Tips | U.S. PIRG

Capital One exposes 100 million to identity theft in largest-ever bank hack

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