Patients and their families should be protected from the financial burden of unexpected medical bills, AHA President and CEO Rick Pollack writes in a letter to the editor published online Friday in the New York Times. Responding to a recent Upshot piece on the issue, Pollack says AHA supports model legislation by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners that “would use a structured mediation process between insurers and physicians to address out-of-network bills, relieving patients from this burden. In fact, state-based solutions are already in place in states like California, Texas and New York, helping provide consumers with needed relief as well as offering an outlet to settle out-of-network bills amicably. Working together across the health care system, we will continue our efforts to end consumer surprise and improve billing transparency.”