skip to main content

Listen

Read

Watch

Schedules

Programs

Events

Give

Account

Donation Heart Ribbon

California Lawmakers To Tweak New Rules Governing Insurance Exchange

— Federal officials have released a set of proposed rules for the insurance exchanges that are a key part of healthcare reform. California lawmakers will consider the proposals during a special session next month.

Aired 11/20/12 on KPBS News.

The rules governing insurance exchanges, including what benefits health plans must cover, have just been released by the federal government.

The rules cover the essential health benefits that all insurance plans in the exchange must have, including emergency services, hospitalization and prescription drugs.

The proposals also lay out the conditions under which insurers can vary the cost of plans. Companies will be allowed to factor in age, tobacco use and where a person lives.

Anthony Wright, executive director of the non-profit group Health Access California, said lawmakers will have to make sure so-called regional pricing doesn't get out of hand.

"Some insurers propose that there be in the state of California 100 plus regions," Wright said. "And we have argued for bigger and broader regions of a smaller number, because we wanted to prevent the possibility of red-lining."

States can adopt stronger consumer protections than the federal guidelines. Wright believes California lawmakers are likely to do so.

We've upgraded to a better commenting experience!
Log in with your social profile or create a Disqus account.

Please stay on topic and be as concise as possible. Leaving a comment means you agree to our Community Discussion Rules. We like civilized discourse. We don't like spam, lying, profanity, harassment or personal attacks.

comments powered by Disqus