senate Bill S3139

2013-2014 Legislative Session

Requires health insurance companies to provide health proxy forms to the insured and to store completed proxies on behalf of the insured

download bill text pdf

Sponsored By

Archive: Last Bill Status - In Committee


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

do you support this bill?

Actions

view actions (2)
Assembly Actions - Lowercase
Senate Actions - UPPERCASE
Jan 08, 2014 referred to insurance
Jan 30, 2013 referred to insurance

S3139 - Bill Details

Current Committee:
Law Section:
Insurance Law
Laws Affected:
Amd §3217-a, add §3240, Ins L; amd §366-a, Soc Serv L
Versions Introduced in 2011-2012 Legislative Session:
S6939

S3139 - Bill Texts

view summary

Requires health insurance companies to provide health proxy forms to the insured and to store completed proxies on behalf of the insured; requires the department of social services to provide health proxy forms and instructions to persons applying for Medicaid.

view sponsor memo
BILL NUMBER:S3139

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the insurance law, in relation to
requiring health insurance companies to provide health care proxy forms
to the insured and to store completed proxies on behalf of the insured
and to amend the social services law, in relation to requiring the
department of social services to provide health care proxy forms and
instructions to applicants for Medicaid

PURPOSE OF GENERAL IDEA OF BILL: To require health insurance providers
in New York State to issue and store health care proxy forms and written
descriptions of its purpose for policyholders.

SUMMARY:

Section one adds a new subsection (f) to Section 3217-a of the insurance
law to require health insurance providers to give the health proxy form
to all policy holders upon request and every two years. Completion of
the form by the policy holder is not mandatory.

Section two of this bill adds a new section 3240 which requires the
health insurance provider to receive and store the completed proxy form
with the enrollees other records. The insurance carrier shall provide
the proxy form to the healthcare institutions/medical personnel who need
to contact the proxy named on the form in the course of the
policyholder's care.

Section 366-a of the social services law is amended to require the
department to provide health care proxy forms with instructions to
complete the forms to individuals applying for Medicaid. The department
shall accept and store the completed proxy form from the applicant. In
addition the department shall supply the form to the medical facility
treating the applicant.

JUSTIFICATION: Healthcare proxies have been legal documents in New York
State since 1991. A proxy allows a person to designate someone to be
their surrogate decision-maker in a healthcare setting should they be
unable to speak or make decisions for themselves. The State Department
of Health website has forms, extensive instructions and information on
healthcare proxies. Unfortunately, very few people in the State have
completed this form, or even know that it exists.

Currently, hospitals are required by law to provide this form to anyone
being admitted, although it may not be an ideal time for the patient to
make important healthcare decisions. A person entering a hospital may be
in no condition to fill out paperwork or consider who best understands
or knows their wishes. Even if a hospitalization is planned, it can be a
stressful time for an individual and people close to them, making them
unwilling to complete the document or to make the best choice regarding
the identity of their healthcare proxy.

For those who do have a healthcare proxy, there is no set system for
making this form available to the healthcare institution caring for the
Proxy-holder. If one fills out a proxy form at a healthcare institution,
is discharged, and then some time later is admitted to a different
institution, a new form would likely be needed. If one has supplied a
completed form to one's primary care physician's office, there is no
guarantee that it will be transferred to an admitting hospital in a
timely manner. Because there is no standardized system for storing this
information, there have also been situations in which a person's most
updated proxy has not been available, and therefore a former proxy no
longer appropriate (for example, a divorced spouse) was the legal agent.

Because it is clear that the people who are closest to a person are best
suited to represent that individual and make decisions regarding their
care, New York has recently passed into law the Family Healthcare Deci-
sions Act (FHDA). While this certainly represents progress in our
efforts to achieve quality patient care, it also highlights the fact
that for some the person who would be their designated agent per FHDA
may not be the one they would choose as their healthcare proxy. Further-
more, FHDA only applies to certain healthcare settings, while a Proxy
applies to all settings. For example, if a person suffering from demen-
tia wished to be represented by their spouse at their community clinic,
this would be possible under current law only if the person had desig-
nated their spouse as their proxy.

Individuals, families, healthcare institutions, and health insurance
companies are all best served by patients and their loved ones being
satisfied that a person is receiving the individual care that they would
choose. Having a current healthcare proxy is the ideal way to accomplish
this. The only way for more people to complete this document and update
it if their life circumstances change, is to increase exposure to the
document.

Whenever a person is admitted to a healthcare institution, that institu-
tion always contacts their insurance provider for personal information
and reimbursement purposes. In the process of such a transaction, it
would be convenient for the policy provider to make available the
Proxy's identity and contact information in whatever format they are
providing other data needed by the health care institution (phone, fax,
etc.)

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS FOR THE STATE: To be determined.

EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect on the sixtieth day after it
shall become law; provided, however, that effective immediately, the
addition, amendment and/or repeal of any rule or regulation necessary
for the implementation of this act on its effective date are authorized
and directed to be made and completed on or before such effective date.

view full text
download pdf
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                  3139

                       2013-2014 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                            January 30, 2013
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sen. KRUEGER -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the Committee on Insurance

AN ACT to amend the insurance  law,  in  relation  to  requiring  health
  insurance  companies to provide health care proxy forms to the insured
  and to store completed proxies on behalf of the insured and  to  amend
  the  social  services  law, in relation to requiring the department of
  social services to provide health care proxy forms and instructions to
  applicants for Medicaid

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

  Section 1.  Section 3217-a of the insurance law is amended by adding a
new subsection (f) to read as follows:
  (F)  EACH INSURER SUBJECT TO THIS ARTICLE SHALL SUPPLY TO EACH INSURED
BIENNIALLY, OR UPON  REQUEST,  TO  EACH  PROSPECTIVE  INSURED  PRIOR  TO
ENROLLMENT,  A  WRITTEN HEALTH CARE PROXY FORM AND A WRITTEN DESCRIPTION
OF THE PURPOSE OF THE HEALTH CARE PROXY FORM AND THE PROCEDURE BY  WHICH
TO COMPLETE SUCH FORM.
  S 2. The insurance law is amended by adding a new section 3240 to read
as follows:
  S  3240.  HEALTH  CARE  PROXY.  (A) AN INSURER SUBJECT TO THIS ARTICLE
SHALL ACCEPT RECEIPT FROM AN INSURED OF HIS OR HER COMPLETED HEALTH CARE
PROXY AND STORE  SUCH  COMPLETED  PROXY  WITH  THE  INSURED'S  PERMANENT
RECORDS. THE INSURED MAY SUBMIT SUCH PROXY TO THE INSURER AT THE TIME OF
REGISTRATION  OR  ENROLLMENT OF HIS OR HER HEALTH INSURANCE POLICY OR AT
ANY TIME THE INSURED HOLDS A POLICY WITH THE INSURER.  THE  INSURED  MAY
FILE  AN UPDATED COMPLETED PROXY WITH HIS OR HER INSURER AT ANY TIME THE
INSURED HOLDS A POLICY WITH THE INSURER.
  (B) AN INSURER SHALL PROVIDE A COPY  OF  AN  INSURED'S  MOST  RECENTLY
EXECUTED  HEALTH  CARE PROXY STORED WITH THE INSURED'S PERMANENT RECORDS
BY THE INSURER TO ANY HEALTH CARE PROVIDER OR INSTITUTION  TREATING  THE

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD01000-01-3

S. 3139                             2

INSURED WITHIN TWENTY-FOUR HOURS AFTER RECEIVING INITIAL NOTIFICATION OF
THE INSURED'S TREATMENT.
  S  3.  Subdivision 1-a of section 366-a of the social services law, as
added by chapter 512 of the laws of 2011, is amended to read as follows:
  1-a. Every person making application for medical assistance, and every
person on whose behalf an application is made, shall[,  if  interested,]
be given the New York state department of health model health care proxy
form, A WRITTEN DESCRIPTION OF THE PURPOSE OF THE HEALTH CARE PROXY FORM
AND  THE  PROCEDURE  BY WHICH TO COMPLETE SUCH FORM by the person taking
the application, except  where  doing  so  would  impede  the  immediate
provision  of health care services.  THE DEPARTMENT SHALL SUPPLY TO EACH
PERSON INSURED BIENNIALLY, OR UPON REQUEST, A WRITTEN HEALTH CARE  PROXY
FORM, A WRITTEN DESCRIPTION OF THE PURPOSE OF THE HEALTH CARE PROXY FORM
AND  THE  PROCEDURE BY WHICH TO COMPLETE SUCH FORM. THE DEPARTMENT SHALL
ACCEPT RECEIPT FROM THE APPLICANT OF HIS OR HER  COMPLETED  HEALTH  CARE
PROXY  AND  STORE  SUCH  COMPLETED  PROXY WITH THE APPLICANT'S PERMANENT
RECORDS. THE APPLICANT MAY SUBMIT HIS OR  HER  COMPLETED  PROXY  TO  THE
DEPARTMENT  AT THE TIME OF APPLICATION OR ENROLLMENT FOR BENEFITS PURSU-
ANT TO THE PROVISIONS OF THIS TITLE OR AT  ANY  TIME  THE  APPLICANT  IS
RECEIVING BENEFITS PURSUANT TO THE PROVISIONS OF THIS TITLE. THE DEPART-
MENT  SHALL  PROVIDE  A  COPY  OF THE APPLICANT'S MOST RECENTLY EXECUTED
HEALTH CARE PROXY STORED WITH THE APPLICANT'S PERMANENT RECORDS  BY  THE
DEPARTMENT  TO  ANY  HEALTH  CARE  PROVIDER  OR INSTITUTION TREATING THE
APPLICANT WITHIN TWENTY-FOUR HOURS AFTER RECEIVING INITIAL  NOTIFICATION
OF THE APPLICANT'S TREATMENT.
  S  4.  This  act  shall take effect on the sixtieth day after it shall
have become a law; provided, however, that  effective  immediately,  the
addition,  amendment  and/or  repeal of any rule or regulation necessary
for the implementation of this act on its effective date are  authorized
and directed to be made and completed on or before such effective date.

Comments

Open Legislation comments facilitate discussion of New York State legislation. All comments are subject to moderation. Comments deemed off-topic, commercial, campaign-related, self-promotional; or that contain profanity or hate speech; or that link to sites outside of the nysenate.gov domain are not permitted, and will not be published. Comment moderation is generally performed Monday through Friday.

By contributing or voting you agree to the Terms of Participation and verify you are over 13.