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Mass. lowers health care payment surcharge


BOSTON--Massachusetts health care regulators are lowering a surcharge on payments made to hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers in the state.

The new surcharge, which applies to bills paid on or after Oct. 1, is 2.1%, down from 2.3%. The surcharge is imposed on third-party claims administrators, health maintenance organizations, preferred provider organizations and employers nationwide that administer their own health care plans.

Massachusetts uses revenue generated by the surcharge to reimburse hospitals for care provided to the uninsured. However, under health care reform legislation enacted earlier this year, a greater portion of the revenues will be shifted over time to subsidizing health insurance premiums of lower-income, uninsured state residents.