Breaking News: Murphy to create new health care cost watchdog


Gov. Phil Murphy delivers his State of the State address in Trenton on Jan. 15, 2019.

Gov. Phil Murphy delivers his first State of the State address in Trenton on Jan. 15, 2019. – AARON HOUSTON

Gov. Phil Murphy intends to create a new state agency designed to reduce health care costs and maintain an affordable system of insurance for consumers.

In his state of the state message he is scheduled to deliver later on Jan. 14, Murphy will say he is establishing an Office of Health Care Accountability and Transparency in the Governor’s Office “to work across state agencies and lead critical efforts to reduce consumer health care costs, make insurance more affordable, and improve price transparency,” according to an excerpt of the text provided to NJBIZ.

The governor will also direct the Department of Banking and Insurance to work with the new agency to monitor health care costs paid by residents.

“Armed with this data, we will make smart decisions to limit cost increases and set new standards for quality and transparency,” the text reads.

Murphy and the Legislature have taken several steps toward providing health insurance to state residents outside of employer plans. The most prominent move was to establish a state-based insurance exchange that will begin operating independently of the federal program in 2021.

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