Mandatory Coverage Bills Show Lawmakers ‘Oblivious’ to Health Care Costs, Sacramento Bee Editorial Says
A Sacramento Bee editorial today questions the cost of health care reforms proposed recently by California legislators who seek to mandate that insurers cover an increasing number of services. The editorial points to a bill (AB 1826) proposed by Assembly member Carole Midgen (D-San Francisco) that would require insurers to cover fertility treatments, with no lifetime financial limit. Health plans say the measure would increase health care premiums by 5%, the editorial notes. At the same time, market forces are causing a rise in health care premium rates, as hospitals consolidate and charge more for services and prescription drug prices continue to climb, the Bee says. The editorial cites bids from health plans that CalPERS received last week to increase health insurance premiums next year by an average of 30% as an example of such "superinflation." The Bee writes, "The agenda in the Capitol should be about controlling costs as much as possible and expanding access," not about additional requirements for health insurers (Sacramento Bee, 4/18).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.