California Healthline: Senate Passes Bill Requiring Coverage, Notice After Changes in Provider Status

by David Gorn 

The state Senate yesterday passed a bill to require insurers to give proper notice if they sever ties with a provider so people know their provider of choice is no longer covered in-network. The bill also would force insurers to maintain coverage for appointments made before providers’ network status changed.

“This bill protects health care access for people seeking timely medical care from a doctor in their preferred medical network … and ensures policyholders are held harmless when contracts between their insurer and their health care provider, and that provider is no longer available to them within that existing network,” said Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson (D-Santa Barbara) on the Senate floor yesterday.

Jackson said she authored SB 780 because of a gap in California’s regulatory system for health care insurance. Because of the bifurcated nature of insurance regulation by two agencies — the Department of Insurance and the Department of Managed Health Care — there is a discrepancy in this provision between the two, she said.

Continue Reading here: http://www.californiahealthline.org/capitol-desk/2014/1/senate-passes-bill-requiring-coverage-notice-after-changes-in-provider-status

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