***Monday, January 27th: Roundtable at 10 AM***
SENATE HEALTH COMMITTEE TO HOST OUT-OF-NETWORK ROUNDTABLE
Albany, N.Y. – 01/24/2014 – The New York Senate Health Committee will host a roundtable discussion on Monday, January 27th to discuss out-of-network insurance coverage. Chairman Kemp Hannon (R – Nassau County), Health Committee Member Senator Greg Ball (R, C, I – Patterson), and other Committee Members will focus on legislative proposals (including S2551/A7253  and S6207/A8494 ) that would enable New Yorkers to continue to be able to purchase health coverage that enables them to see the physician of their choice.
The legislation would make the cost of health care more transparent and protect consumers from exorbitant surprise medical bills. Participants of the roundtable will include physicians and consumers with firsthand experiences dealing with out-of-network issues.
“I commend the Governor for putting forth legislation in his proposed budget to address out-of-network coverage and look forward to working with him to enact meaningful reforms,” said Senator Hannon. “The fact that individuals seeking insurance coverage through the exchange cannot find a policy that offers out-of-network coverage in most areas of the state is alarming and should be part of our reform effort.”
“We have multi-billion dollar insurance companies that are seeing record profits, a healthcare system that is broken and forcing doctors out of this state in droves, and blue-collar families that are being held over the barrel by insufficient networks and coverage,” said Senator Greg Ball. “This is reaching a critical level, we cannot wait another year for both houses to pass this important bill and submit it to the Governor for his immediate signature.”
Both Chad Glaser of Buffalo and Maureen Kenney of Bedford Hills will speak about how their families have been wronged by the health care system. Chad Glaser’s son was born with a rare liver disease that required out-of-network health care services and Maureen Kenney’s husband was transported to an out-of-network hospital during an emergency heart operation and woke up to a $99,000 bill.
Senator Hannon and Senator Ball’s legislation, S2551 which passed the Senate in 2013 and 2012, would address these concerns by assuring that consumers can purchase health coverage that pays for the true costs of medical care they will face. Importantly as well, the bill would require certain disclosures by health care providers, hospitals and insurers to prevent surprise medical bills and assure patients have greater information regarding the scope of their coverage. Their bill would also protect consumers by ensuring they have adequate access to in-network services, with the capability to go out-of-network in the event there is no in-network provider. Furthermore, this legislation would protect consumers from excessive charges for emergency services. Senate Bill 6207 would require that insurers provider individuals purchasing insurance have the option to purchase out-of-network coverage.
Senator Greg Ball has created a petition on his website that has over 6,000 signatures. Click here to sign the petition .
What: Out-of-Network Roundtable
When: Monday, January 27th, 2014 at 10 AM
Where: NYS Capitol Building, Room 124, NYS Capitol Building Albany, NY 12247
Who: Chairman Kemp Hannon, Senator Greg Ball, members of the Senate Health Committee, physicians, patients who have had to deal with out-of-network issues.