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News From Georgia Watch

April 7, 2015
In This Issue
Legislative recap
Emory-WellStar merger
Comments on prepaid card rules
In the News
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2015 Legislative Recap

The legislative session ended on Thursday, April 2nd (Sine Die). We have been diligently following bills that will impact consumers throughout the session and are pleased to report several wins for consumers this year, including HB 57, HB 72 and more. Read the full report from the session here>
Emory-WellStar Merger Raises Questions

Georgia Watch's Health Access Program submitted comments to both Emory Healthcare and WellStar Health System expressing deep concern about the potential merger. Georgia Watch voiced concern that the public comment process lacks transparency and meaningful consumer engagement, as well as the impact this merger may have on healthcare prices.  "Nationwide, hospital consolidation is leading to higher prices for consumers with little to no improvement in the quality of care individuals receive," said Beth Stephens, Georgia Watch's Health Access Program Director.  Read more>
Georgia Watch Submits Comments to CFPB on Proposed Prepaid Card Rules

Georgia Watch submitted formal comment on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's (CFPB) proposed rules for protecting consumers who use prepaid and payroll cards. "While prepaid cards are a relatively new product in the personal finance market, they are becoming increasingly popular with the unbanked population," said Elise Blasingame, Georgia Watch's Director of Community Education. Read more>
Georgia Watch in the News
PSC Sticks With Current Schedule to Consider Vogtle Cost Increases
Potential Merger Sparks Concerns on Prices
Opponents: Emory/WellStar Merger Talks Lack Transparency