senate Bill S4712E

Relates to private air ambulance service insurance exemptions

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Bill Status


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor
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actions

  • 15 / Apr / 2011
    • REFERRED TO INSURANCE
  • 07 / Jun / 2011
    • AMEND AND RECOMMIT TO INSURANCE
  • 07 / Jun / 2011
    • PRINT NUMBER 4712A
  • 20 / Jun / 2011
    • COMMITTEE DISCHARGED AND COMMITTED TO RULES
  • 20 / Jun / 2011
    • ORDERED TO THIRD READING CAL.1421
  • 20 / Jun / 2011
    • PASSED SENATE
  • 20 / Jun / 2011
    • DELIVERED TO ASSEMBLY
  • 20 / Jun / 2011
    • REFERRED TO INSURANCE
  • 04 / Jan / 2012
    • DIED IN ASSEMBLY
  • 04 / Jan / 2012
    • RETURNED TO SENATE
  • 04 / Jan / 2012
    • REFERRED TO INSURANCE
  • 05 / Jan / 2012
    • AMEND AND RECOMMIT TO INSURANCE
  • 05 / Jan / 2012
    • PRINT NUMBER 4712B
  • 06 / Mar / 2012
    • AMEND (T) AND RECOMMIT TO INSURANCE
  • 06 / Mar / 2012
    • PRINT NUMBER 4712C
  • 19 / Apr / 2012
    • AMEND AND RECOMMIT TO INSURANCE
  • 19 / Apr / 2012
    • PRINT NUMBER 4712D
  • 11 / Jun / 2012
    • AMEND (T) AND RECOMMIT TO INSURANCE
  • 11 / Jun / 2012
    • PRINT NUMBER 4712E
  • 14 / Jun / 2012
    • COMMITTEE DISCHARGED AND COMMITTED TO RULES
  • 14 / Jun / 2012
    • ORDERED TO THIRD READING CAL.1256
  • 18 / Jun / 2012
    • PASSED SENATE
  • 18 / Jun / 2012
    • DELIVERED TO ASSEMBLY
  • 18 / Jun / 2012
    • REFERRED TO INSURANCE

Summary

Relates to private air ambulance service insurance exemptions.

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Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A7821E
Versions:
S4712
S4712A
S4712B
S4712C
S4712D
S4712E
Legislative Cycle:
2011-2012
Current Committee:
Assembly Insurance
Law Section:
Insurance Law
Laws Affected:
Amd §1108, add §1124, Ins L

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S4712E

TITLE OF BILL:
An act
to amend the insurance law, in relation to air ambulance subscription
services; and providing for the repeal of such provisions upon the
expiration thereof

PURPOSE:
To allow private air ambulance services to offer membership
subscriptions.

SUMMARY:
Section 1 amends section 1108 of the insurance law by adding a new
subsection (k) in order that an air ambulance service which complies
with section 2 of this bill, be added to the list of exemptions for
insurance licensure.

Section 2 adds a new section 1124 to the insurance law to set
parameters for air ambulance service subscription certificates.

Section 3 provides the enacting clause.

JUSTIFICATION:
In addition to the unique beauty New York State's broad and diverse
landscape provides, it also creates some vast rural areas that are
difficult to access. Recreational enthusiasts and residents in our
State's most rural areas enjoy the breadth of space but lack easy
access to major transportation routes. This can be especially
problematic in emergency situations.

Air ambulances are helicopters used in emergency medical situations
when a traditional ambulance cannot reach the scene or transport the
patient easily or quickly enough. Air ambulance crews are supplied
with equipment and professional training that enable them to provide
medical treatment to a critically injured or ill patient in flight.
With the use of helicopters, the professional pilots are able to get
the medical personnel to the patient more quickly and transport
patients to a hospital faster, therefore providing consistently
superior critical care.

Many of New York's most rural areas can be hours away from trauma
centers. One such area is northern New York. Five years ago, northern
New York lost the MEDEVAC services of the Military Assistance to
Safety and Traffic unit at Fort Drum in Jefferson County. Now air
ambulances come from Saranac Lake or Syracuse which severely
lengthens response times often having to stop for fuel and are
weather dependent especially in the winter months.

Travel of traditional ambulances can be unpredictable and inconsistent.
Syracuse provides the closest level 1 trauma center to the region

which for some areas in northern New York can be 3 hours by
traditional ambulance in good conditions. Like other areas of the
State, the people and visitors of northern New York would greatly
benefit from the presence of a professional air ambulance team.

Lower call volume and the expense of running a full-time air ambulance
service, has made it difficult to attract companies to New York's
rural regions. By allowing air ambulance companies to solicit
membership subscriptions, we offer a way to mitigate the high cost
of doing business in New York.

Under current law, soliciting of membership subscriptions for air
ambulance services is considered a form of medical insurance.

Section 1108 of the insurance law includes a host of instances when
certain parties are exempt from licensing and other requirements to
add one additional exemption. The new subsection (k) exempts any
private air ambulance service that solicits membership subscriptions.

By enacting this legislation we recognize the need of rural
communities in New York to have fast, effective emergency medical
service. By attracting air ambulance companies to New York, we'll be
filling a need for medical transport and service that saves lives.

Furthermore, the legislation allows air ambulance companies to solicit
membership subscriptions and provides the additional service on an
unsubsidized, tax-free basis which eases the burden on rural
municipalities and their residents.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
New bill.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:
None to the state.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
This act shall take effect on ninetieth day after it shall have become
law.

view bill text
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                 4712--E

                       2011-2012 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                             April 15, 2011
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sen. RITCHIE -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the Committee  on  Insurance  --  committee
  discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted
  to  said  committee  --  recommitted  to the Committee on Insurance in
  accordance with Senate Rule 6, sec. 8 --  committee  discharged,  bill
  amended,  ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said commit-
  tee --  committee  discharged,  bill  amended,  ordered  reprinted  as
  amended  and  recommitted  to  said committee -- committee discharged,
  bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended  and  recommitted  to  said
  committee  -- committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as
  amended and recommitted to said committee

AN ACT to  amend  the  insurance  law,  in  relation  to  air  ambulance
  subscription services; and providing for the repeal of such provisions
  upon the expiration thereof

  THE  PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section 1. Section 1108 of the insurance law is amended  by  adding  a
new subsection (k) to read as follows:
  (K)  AN  AIR  AMBULANCE  SERVICE  THAT HOLDS A VALID AMBULANCE SERVICE
OPERATING CERTIFICATE ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT  OF  HEALTH  PURSUANT  TO
SECTION  THREE  THOUSAND FIVE OF THE PUBLIC HEALTH LAW AND THAT COMPLIES
WITH SECTION ONE THOUSAND ONE HUNDRED TWENTY-FOUR OF THIS ARTICLE.
  S 2. The insurance law is amended by adding a new section 1124 to read
as follows:
  S 1124. AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE SUBSCRIPTION  CERTIFICATE.  (A)  AN  AIR
AMBULANCE SERVICE THAT HOLDS A VALID AMBULANCE SERVICE OPERATING CERTIF-
ICATE ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH PURSUANT TO SECTION THREE THOU-
SAND  FIVE  OF  THE  PUBLIC HEALTH LAW AND A VALID AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE
SUBSCRIPTION  CERTIFICATE  ISSUED  BY  THE  SUPERINTENDENT  PURSUANT  TO
SUBSECTION  (B)  OF THIS SECTION MAY ENTER INTO A SUBSCRIPTION AGREEMENT
WITH A PERSON OR OTHER ENTITY IN THIS STATE UNDER WHICH  THE  AIR  AMBU-

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD10652-23-2

S. 4712--E                          2

LANCE  SERVICE  AGREES  TO  DISCOUNT  OR  WAIVE ANY PART OF ITS FEES FOR
SERVICE IN THE EVENT THAT THE AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE TRANSPORTS A  PERSON
BY  AIRCRAFT  TO, FROM OR BETWEEN GENERAL HOSPITALS OR OTHER HEALTH CARE
FACILITIES.
  (B) THE SUPERINTENDENT MAY ISSUE AN AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE SUBSCRIPTION
CERTIFICATE  TO  ANY  ENTITY THAT IS TRUSTWORTHY TO ACT IN SUCH CAPACITY
AND THAT HAS COMPLIED WITH THE PREREQUISITES HEREIN PRESCRIBED. THE  AIR
AMBULANCE  SERVICE MUST HOLD A VALID AMBULANCE SERVICE OPERATING CERTIF-
ICATE ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH PURSUANT TO SECTION THREE THOU-
SAND FIVE OF THE PUBLIC HEALTH LAW THAT AUTHORIZES THE AMBULANCE SERVICE
TO PROVIDE SERVICES BY AIRCRAFT. THE AIR  AMBULANCE  SERVICE  MUST  ALSO
OBTAIN,  AND  MAINTAIN  THROUGHOUT THE TERM OF ITS AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE
SUBSCRIPTION CERTIFICATE, A SURETY BOND ISSUED BY AN AUTHORIZED  INSURER
AND  PAYABLE  TO  AIR  AMBULANCE  SERVICE SUBSCRIBERS TO REFUND UNEARNED
SUBSCRIPTION FEES PAID TO THE AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE.
  (C) THE APPLICATION FOR AN AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE SUBSCRIPTION  CERTIF-
ICATE SHALL BE IN SUCH FORM OR FORMS, AND SHALL CONTAIN SUCH INFORMATION
AS  THE  SUPERINTENDENT SHALL PRESCRIBE. THE AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE SHALL
WITH THE SUBMISSION OF THE APPLICATION ALSO SUBMIT  PROOF  THAT  IT  HAS
OBTAINED  THE SURETY BOND REQUIRED IN SUBSECTION (B) OF THIS SECTION AND
A COPY OF ITS AMBULANCE SERVICE  OPERATING  CERTIFICATE  ISSUED  BY  THE
DEPARTMENT  OF  HEALTH  PURSUANT  TO  SECTION THREE THOUSAND FIVE OF THE
PUBLIC HEALTH LAW.
  (D) AN AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE SUBSCRIPTION CERTIFICATE SHALL  BE  VALID
FOR  A  TERM OF TWO YEARS TO RUN CONCURRENTLY WITH, AND TERMINATE ON THE
SAME DATE AS, THE TERM OF THE AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE'S OPERATING  CERTIF-
ICATE ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH PURSUANT TO SECTION THREE THOU-
SAND FIVE OF THE PUBLIC HEALTH LAW. AT THE TIME OF APPLICATION FOR EVERY
SUCH  CERTIFICATE, AND FOR EVERY RENEWAL THEREOF, AN APPLICANT SHALL PAY
TO THE SUPERINTENDENT THE SUM OF ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS.
  (E) IF AN APPLICANT FILES AN APPLICATION  FOR  A  RENEWAL  CERTIFICATE
WITH  THE SUPERINTENDENT BEFORE THE EXPIRATION OF SUCH CERTIFICATE, THEN
THE CERTIFICATE SOUGHT TO BE RENEWED SHALL CONTINUE IN  FULL  FORCE  AND
EFFECT  EITHER  UNTIL  THE ISSUANCE BY THE SUPERINTENDENT OF THE RENEWAL
CERTIFICATE APPLIED FOR OR UNTIL  FIVE  DAYS  AFTER  THE  SUPERINTENDENT
SHALL HAVE REFUSED TO ISSUE SUCH RENEWAL CERTIFICATE AS PROVIDED IN THIS
SECTION.
  (F)  THE SUPERINTENDENT MAY REFUSE TO RENEW, REVOKE, OR SUSPEND AN AIR
AMBULANCE SERVICE SUBSCRIPTION CERTIFICATE FOR A PERIOD THE  SUPERINTEN-
DENT  DETERMINES, IF AFTER NOTICE AND HEARING, THE SUPERINTENDENT DETER-
MINES THAT AN APPLICANT OR CERTIFICATE HOLDER HAS: (1) NOT  OBTAINED  OR
MAINTAINED THE SURETY BOND REQUIRED BY SUBSECTION (B) OF THIS SECTION OR
(2)  DEMONSTRATED  UNTRUSTWORTHINESS,  INCLUDING  HAVING  VIOLATED  THIS
SECTION.
  (G) THE COMMISSIONER OF HEALTH SHALL  IMMEDIATELY  NOTIFY  THE  SUPER-
INTENDENT  WHEN  THE  COMMISSIONER  HAS  REVOKED, SUSPENDED, LIMITED, OR
ANNULLED AN AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE OPERATING CERTIFICATE.  AN  AIR  AMBU-
LANCE  SERVICE  SUBSCRIPTION CERTIFICATE ISSUED PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION
SHALL TERMINATE BY OPERATION OF LAW UPON THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THE REVO-
CATION, SUSPENSION, OR ANNULMENT OF THE AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE'S  OPERAT-
ING CERTIFICATE BY THE COMMISSIONER.
  (H)  AN  AIR  AMBULANCE  SERVICE SHALL FILE ITS SUBSCRIPTION AGREEMENT
FORMS WITH THE SUPERINTENDENT IN CONNECTION WITH ITS APPLICATION OR  ANY
RENEWAL  APPLICATION  FOR  AN AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE SUBSCRIPTION CERTIF-
ICATE. AN AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE THAT AMENDS ITS  SUBSCRIPTION  AGREEMENT
FORMS  SHALL  FILE  THE  REVISED  FORMS WITH THE SUPERINTENDENT PRIOR TO

S. 4712--E                          3

USING THE FORMS IN THIS STATE, PROVIDED THAT WHERE THE AMENDMENTS TO THE
FORMS ARE  ONLY  TECHNICAL  OR  NON-SUBSTANTIATIVE,  THE  AIR  AMBULANCE
SERVICE  MAY  FILE THE REVISED FORMS AT OR BEFORE THE TIME IT RENEWS ITS
AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE SUBSCRIPTION CERTIFICATE.
  (I)  THE  SUBSCRIPTION AGREEMENT FORMS SHALL: (1) EXPRESSLY STATE THAT
THE SUBSCRIPTION IS NOT A GUARANTEE FOR THE PROVISION OF MEDICAL  TREAT-
MENT OR TRANSPORT; (2) LIST THE CONDITIONS UNDER WHICH THE AIR AMBULANCE
SERVICE  MAY  NOT  PROVIDE MEDICAL TREATMENT OR TRANSPORT; AND (3) STATE
THAT A SUBSCRIBER MAY FILE A COMPLAINT WITH THE DEPARTMENT, AND  INCLUDE
THE DEPARTMENT'S WEBSITE AND MAILING ADDRESS.
  (J)  AN  AIR  AMBULANCE  SUBSCRIPTION  AGREEMENT  MAY: (1) CONDITION A
DISCOUNT OR WAIVER OF ANY PART  OF  THE  FEES  UPON  THE  AIR  AMBULANCE
SERVICE RECEIVING AN ASSIGNMENT OF INSURANCE PAYMENTS, OR OTHER RIGHT TO
REIMBURSEMENT  OR  RECOVERY, FOR THE AIR AMBULANCE SERVICES; (2) PROVIDE
FOR A DISCOUNT OR WAIVER OF ANY PART  OF  THE  FEES  FOR  AIR  AMBULANCE
SERVICE  PROVIDED BY AN ENTITY AFFILIATED WITH THE AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE
THAT IS DULY AUTHORIZED TO PROVIDE THE AMBULANCE SERVICES IN THE  JURIS-
DICTION  IN  WHICH  THE SERVICES ARE RENDERED; AND (3) COVER TWO OR MORE
PERSONS, SUCH AS FAMILY MEMBERS, EMPLOYEES,  OCCUPANTS  OF  A  SPECIFIED
PREMISES,  OR  ANOTHER  GROUP OF PERSONS WITH A COMMON RELATIONSHIP WITH
ONE ANOTHER. FOR PURPOSES OF THIS SECTION, AN ENTITY IS AFFILIATED  WITH
AN  AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE WHERE THE ENTITY AND THE AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE
HAVE ENTERED INTO AN  AGREEMENT  TO  PROVIDE  RECIPROCAL  AIR  AMBULANCE
SERVICES TO EACH OTHER'S SUBSCRIBERS.
  (K)  A SUBSCRIBER'S INSURER, WITH RESPECT TO A HEALTH INSURANCE POLICY
OR CONTRACT DELIVERED OR ISSUED FOR DELIVERY IN THIS  STATE,  SHALL  NOT
TAKE  INTO  CONSIDERATION  ANY  DISCOUNT  OR  FEE  WAIVER  GIVEN  TO THE
SUBSCRIBER BY THE AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE  WHEN  DETERMINING  THE  BENEFIT
PAYABLE  UNDER THE HEALTH INSURANCE POLICY OR CONTRACT FOR AIR AMBULANCE
SERVICES.
  (L) THE SUPERINTENDENT SHALL NOTIFY THE COMMISSIONER OF HEALTH WHENEV-
ER THE SUPERINTENDENT ISSUES,  RENEWS,  REFUSES  TO  RENEW,  REVOKES  OR
SUSPENDS AN AIR AMBULANCE SERVICE SUBSCRIPTION CERTIFICATE.
  (M)  THE  SUPERINTENDENT  MAY PROMULGATE REGULATIONS IMPLEMENTING THIS
SECTION.
  S 3. This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day  after  it  shall
have  become a law and shall expire and be deemed repealed 3 years after
such effective date.

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