STAND. COM. REP. NO. 2711
RE: S.B. No. 2340
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Twenty-Ninth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2018
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Ways and Means, to which was referred S.B. No. 2340, S.D. 1, entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO HEALTH INSURANCE,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to ensure that certain benefits conferred under the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, as amended, are preserved under Hawaii law.
Specifically, this measure requires policies, contracts, plans, or agreements offered by health insurers, mutual benefit societies, and health maintenance organizations to:
(1) Extend dependent coverage until the child turns twenty-six years of age;
(2) Prohibiting exclusions for preexisting conditions; and
(3) Not use gender to discriminate in premium or contribution levels.
Your Committee received written comments in support of this measure from the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Insurance Division; one Hawaii County Council Member; Hawaii Medical Service Association; AARP Hawaii; ACOG, Hawaii Section; American Association of University Women, Hawaii; Filipina Advocacy Network FAN; Hawaii Children's Action Network; Hawaii Appleseed Center for Law and Economic Justice; Hawaii Government Employees Association; Hawaii Public Health Institute; Hawaii State Democratic Women's Caucus; Hawaii Self Advocacy Advisory Council; Hawaii Women Lawyers; Hawaii Women's Coalition; Healthcare Association of Hawaii; Healthy Mothers Healthy Babies; IMUAlliance; Kaiser Permanente; LGBT Caucus of the Democratic Party of Hawaii; OCC Legislative Priorities Committee, Democratic Party of Hawai`i; Queen's Health Systems; Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest and Hawaii; Save Medicaid Hawaii; Sex Abuse Treatment Center; and 116 concerned individuals.
Your Committee received written comments in opposition to this measure from the American Council of Life Insurers.
Your Committee finds that the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, as amended, establishes important protections for Hawaii residents, especially low-income residents who were the most likely group of residents to lack health insurance coverage before passage of the federal act. Recently, Congress has been engaging in numerous attempts to repeal the federal act, threatening the health care coverage gains provided by it.
Research has shown that the expansion of health care coverage afforded by the federal act has improved medical care and health among low-income adults, especially those suffering from chronic conditions. In particular, the federal act's requirement that health insurers provide coverage for individuals with preexisting health conditions is crucial to ensuring wide access to health insurance.
Your Committee believes that this measure will ensure that Hawaii residents will continue to benefit from the most important protections created under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, as amended, regardless of the outcome of its provisions at the federal level.
Your Committee has amended this measure by:
(1) Applying consistent terminology for the types of insurance plans covered in the amendments affecting health maintenance organizations; and
(2) Changing the effective date to July 1, 2050, to facilitate further discussion on the measure.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Ways and Means that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 2340, S.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Third Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 2340, S.D. 2.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Ways and Means,
DONOVAN M. DELA CRUZ, Chair