AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) - A Maine state senator who is also a doctor has proposed a bill that would require the state to publish an annual report of hospitals' financial data.
Bangor Democrat Geoffrey Gratwick says his measure would make hospital bills simpler and easier to understand and allow consumers to compare prices of procedures at varying hospitals.
A recent national study showed that the cost of some procedures varies widely from hospital to hospital.
Gratwick, a rheumatologist, tells The Portland Press Herald that the bill comes from his 40 years in a health care system he says is "broken."
The Maine Hospital Association, which testified neither for nor against the bill, said much data is already available to the public - for example tax returns are public because hospitals are nonprofits.