Business groups, community figures join opponents of hospital cost board bill


Several organizations and community leaders joined the Delaware Healthcare Association in opposing the Hospital Cost Review Board Bill.

The organizations submitted a joint letter to bill sponsors ahead of the Senate Executive Committee hearing today.

The letter, states: “It is with that expertise and a great passion for our state and the work we do in our communities that we write you to say HB 350 in its current form is not the way to achieve the goal of reducing healthcare costs. This bill will have disastrous ramifications on not just the hospital systems but on the business and nonprofit communities.”

The letter continues: “It is our hope that we can bring all parties together inclusive of the business community, nonprofit leaders, healthcare systems, providers, payors, pharmaceutical companies, pharmacy benefit managers, state unions, community advocates and patients to determine a strong path forward for our state. That is the Delaware way.”

Brian Frazee, CEO of the Delaware Healthcare Association, stated that while aimed at hospitals, HB 350 will negatively impact Delaware’s economy through the loss of jobs and nonprofit investment and the damage to Delaware’s reputation as a business-friendly state.


“We are grateful that these leaders have joined our efforts to advocate for addressing healthcare costs in a way that strengthens Delaware’s services, workforce, and access to quality healthcare. DHA has put forward amendments that address healthcare affordability, enhance transparency, and hold hospitals accountable to Delaware’s healthcare benchmark. We stand ready to continue working with the bill sponsors to achieve our shared goals in a way that meets our state’s unique needs.”

The Healthcare Association and member hospitals have mounted a campaign on their websites and social media criticizing the bill and claiming it would cost hospitals hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue.

Members of the business community, while dealing with rising health care costs, are worried that the bill would stifle one of the driving forces in the Delaware economy. Hospital systems are a leading employer in the state and account for a significant chunk of construction spending.

In the meantime, legislators are coping with health care costs that now account for one-third of the state budget.

Republican legislators oppose the bill, but are outgunned by Democrats in the State Senate, who hold a supermajority.

The bill passed the House after a contentious debate that went into the evening hours.