Assembly Panel Passes Bill To Boost Oversight of Health Plan Rates
On Tuesday, California's Assembly Committee on HealthÂ voted 12-7 to approve aÂ bill (AB 52), by Assembly member Mike Feuer (D-Los Angeles), that would allow state officials to reject health insurance rate hikes deemed "excessive," California Watch reports (Jewett, California Watch, 4/27).
The federal health reform law and a companion state law require health insurers to disclose proposed rate hikes and hire an outside actuary to review rates.
However, the new laws do not authorize the state to reject proposed rate increases (HealthyCal, 4/26).
AB 52 would allow state regulators to deny, approve or modify proposed increases in health insurance premiums, deductibles or copayments.
In addition, the bill would allow any consumer to intervene in a regulator's decision by filing a civil lawsuit.
Feuer said the legislation aims to prevent health plan rates from rising significantly more than health care costs (California Watch, 4/27).
The bill secured the 12 votes it needed to move out of the health committee. It now moves to the Assembly Committee on Appropriations (Mohajer, AP/Ventura County Star, 4/26).
For additional coverage of AB 52, see today's Capitol Desk post.This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.