PCMS meets with Insurance Commissioner's Senior Health Advisor

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Jane Beyer, Senior Health Policy Advisor to the Washington State Insurance Commissioner, joined the PCMS Board of Trustees for its meeting on Tuesday, October 1.  During the two-hour session, she provided the PCMS Leadership with information about implementation of the state’s new Balance Billing Protection Act and engaged in lively dialog about that topic as well as access to care including the state’s new public health insurance option. 

 

She noted that Washington State will not be allowing the so-called “skinny plans” recently permitted to operate by the federal government again for the first time since prior to the enactment of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare).  Those plans have lower premiums with very little coverage except for catastrophic events and frequently siphon younger, healthier patients out of other payer plans, resulting in those plans having even higher numbers of older patients with many conditions, driving up premiums and deductibles still further, creating even more barriers to access physicians, PAs, and other providers.  The PCMS Leadership was also briefed about the state’s new law enacting certain ACA protections should ACA be modified by the federal government or declared unconstitutional such as non-denial of coverage for preexisting conditions.

 

Most of the conversation centered on balance billing and slides that she provided may be viewed as part of this news item.