Senator Kerry Donovan, D-Vail, is the sponsor of Bill 1232 with Rep. Dylan Roberts, D-Avon and Rep. Iman Jodeh, D-Aurora. If approved, the bill would direct the Colorado insurance commissioner to create a new standardized health benefits plan for January, which will be offered to individual and small group markets by the Colorado Health Insurance Exchange. the state.
Daily archive photo
A Colorado Senate committee began hearing testimony Monday for and against House Bill 1232.
The bill aims to create a lower-quality, high-quality standardized benefit plan for individuals and small businesses who buy health insurance in individual and small-group markets on the Colorado Stock Exchange.
In initial statements to the Health and Human Services Committee, Sen. Kerry Donovan, D-Vail, co-sponsor of the bill, said he did not expect to work on health care issues when he ran for office.
“I thought I would come to the Capitol and work on agricultural, aquatic, and ski-related issues … but the people outside this building had a different plan for me,” Donovan told the committee.
“Over the next few months, almost every door I went to, asking for the support of people through the seven counties where I was trying to be elected, said, through various stories, that you have to work broadband and you have to ‘go to work in health care,’ ‘Donovan said.
Donovan sponsored House Bill 1232 with Rep. Dylan Roberts, D-Avon, and Rep. Iman Jodeh, D-Aurora.
Pointing to a stack of health care bill folders he has worked on, Donovan said the House Bill 1232 is the continuation of nearly ten years of work on health care in the Colorado General Assembly and the next significant step to follow.
“… One of the last nuts we have not yet been able to break, and that is, in individual and small group markets, how can we make sure that, particularly in my part of the state and in others rural areas of the state, how can we make sure there is an affordable plan and that there are options for the consumer, ”Donovan said.
If approved and adhered to by law, the bill will direct Colorado’s insurance commissioner to create a new standardized health benefit plan for January, which is offered to individual and small-group markets in the United States. state health insurance exchange, Connect for Health Colorado.
Insurance companies should offer this standardized plan – now called the Colorado option – to counties where they currently offer coverage, at rates at least 6% lower than the plans they offered in 2021. Additional reductions would be required. of premiums of 6% in 2024 and 2025, with a total of 18% in three years.
The individual and small group markets account for about 15% of the health insurance market in Colorado.
House Bill 1232 cleared the Colorado House along party lines in a 40-23-party vote on Monday, May 10th. He saw a complete rewrite in the House before moving on, with the goal of ending opposition from leading health industry groups such as Colorado Hospital Association, Colorado Health Plans Association, Rural Health Alliance, American Academy of Family Physicians and Children’s Hospital.
Amanday Massey, executive director of the Colorado Health Plans Association, told the Senate committee that her group still has major concerns about the bill, arguing that the industry has already reduced premiums by 28%.
Other groups such as UCHealth, Kaiser Permanente Colorado, Colorado Medical Society and the Colorado Chamber of Commerce lined up early Monday evening to argue against the bill.
Proponents argue that the bill is needed to provide a more affordable and higher-quality health insurance option for individuals, families and small businesses, struggling to pay for insurance and get the necessary health care and compensation from fair way health care providers.
Opponents argue that the bill will reduce access to health care and reduce quality and uncompensated services, not reduce costs, and make the state a less attractive place for health care providers. They also wonder where the required 18% savings will come from, the adequacy and fairness of reimbursement rates for providers, and the mandates that health care providers will accept patients according to the standardized plan.
The testimony of the bill in the Senate committee was expected to last at least six hours Monday evening.
Tom Lotshaw can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.