This is Jason Shafrin:
How did hospitals respond to the law? Over 95 percent of all California hospitals reported that they offered free care to uninsured patients with incomes at or below 100 percent of poverty. However, higher-income uninsured patients still faced the risk of high prices based on billed charges.
Further, this policy did not help improve the accuracy of the billed charges to Medicare. Medicare billed charges are as ridiculous as ever. As shown in the figure below, Medicare payments equaled 20 percent of billed charges by California hospitals in 2010, down from 43 percent in 1997. Thus, although the uninsured are paying less for hospital care, the insured may be paying relatively more.