HMO Regulations Bill Gets Health Committee's OK

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(Sacramento, CA)
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
A bill that would help protect Californians from getting dumped by their insurance company has passed its first test in the legislature. State lawmakers approved the measure Tuesday in a health committee hearing.
Democratic Assemblymember Hector De La Torre wrote the bill. He says it would require insurance companies to get state approval before they could cut back or cancel patients’ policies when they get sick. 
De La Torre: “This legislation will ensure that health plans and insurers will not act as judge and jury whenever they want to rescind or cancel a policy.” 
Insurance industry groups testified that they are still reviewing the bill. They claim it could complicate the application process and delay patient care. They also call the bill’s proposed penalties harsh. It would allow the state to revoke companies’ licenses after one violation. The bill will now go to a fiscal committee for review.