Legislature(2009 - 2010)BUTROVICH 205

03/18/2009 01:30 PM HEALTH & SOCIAL SERVICES


Download Mp3. <- Right click and save file as

Audio Topic
01:31:15 PM Start
01:32:11 PM Confirmation of Governor's Appointments
02:41:38 PM SB11
02:52:38 PM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+ Confirmation of Governor's Appointments TELECONFERENCED
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
+= SB 11 DEPENDENT HEALTH INSURANCE; AGE LIMIT TELECONFERENCED
Moved SB 11 Out of Committee
+= SB 27 FOSTER CARE AGE LIMIT/TUITION WAIVER TELECONFERENCED
Scheduled But Not Heard
          SB  11-DEPENDENT HEALTH INSURANCE; AGE LIMIT                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
2:41:38 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR DAVIS announced consideration of SB 11.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
TOM OBERMEYER, staff to Senator Davis, sponsor of SB 11, read                                                                   
the sponsor statement into the record as follows:                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     SB  11 requires  an  insurer to  enroll, and  prohibits                                                                    
     taking  off  the  rolls   or  eliminating  health  care                                                                    
     insurance coverage without the  consent of the insured,                                                                    
     for a person  less than 26 years old who  is related to                                                                    
     the  insured, unmarried,  financially dependent  on the                                                                    
     insured,  does  not  have dependents,  enrolled  in  an                                                                    
     institution of higher education,  and not insured under                                                                    
     another policy.   SB 11 changes  the age that  a person                                                                    
     is considered  a child from 23  years of age to  26 for                                                                    
     purposes of  determining who may  be insured  under the                                                                    
     same policy of health insurance.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     Young  adults,  ages  19-29, are  one  of  the  largest                                                                    
     growing segments of the  U.S. population without health                                                                    
     insurance.   In 2004  almost  14  million young  adults                                                                    
     lacked  coverage,  an  increase of  2.5  million  since                                                                    
     2000.   This  rapid change  is  due  in part  to  their                                                                    
     losing coverage  under their  parents' policies  at 19,                                                                    
     or  Medicaid,  or  State  Children's  Health  Insurance                                                                    
      Program, or graduation from high school or college.                                                                       
     Almost  half of  college graduates  and high  graduates                                                                    
     will  be   uninsured  for  a  substantial   time  after                                                                    
     graduation.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     Age  19   is  a   crucial  year  in   health  insurance                                                                    
     coverage.   Both  public  and private  insurance  plans                                                                    
     treat  this  age  as  a  turning  point  for  insurance                                                                    
     coverage.  Even if  youth go  on  to college,  parents'                                                                    
     insurance plans  often stop before  graduation.  Almost                                                                    
     all  private  universities  and  about  one  fourth  of                                                                    
     public  universities  require  health  insurance  as  a                                                                    
     condition  of enrollment.   Forty percent  of part-time                                                                    
     students and non-students, and  20 percent of full-time                                                                    
     students ages 19-23 are uninsured.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     Insurance  coverage  is  important for  this  generally                                                                    
     healthy group of young adults  who should be encouraged                                                                    
     to  start taking  responsibility for  their own  health                                                                    
     care.  It has been found  that 14 percent of adults 18-                                                                    
     29 are obese,  an increase of 70 percent  in the 1990s,                                                                    
     - the fastest rate of  increase among all adults. There                                                                    
     are  3.5 million  pregnancies each  year  among the  21                                                                    
     million women  ages 19-29.  One-third of  all diagnoses                                                                    
     of  HIV are  made  among young  adults. Emergency  room                                                                    
     visits  are far  more  common among  young adults  than                                                                    
     children  or older  adults. Most  young adults  have no                                                                    
     regular doctor, no link to  the health care system, and                                                                    
     more  than one-third  of those  who do  require medical                                                                    
     attention are  often saddled  with debt  and collection                                                                    
     agencies.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     States are taking action to  mandate coverage for young                                                                    
     adults,  often allowing  for  targeted policy  options.                                                                    
     For  example, in  2006 New  Jersey required  most group                                                                    
     health  plans to  cover single  adult dependents  up to                                                                    
     age 30. Massachusetts  as part  of its  expanded health                                                                    
     insurance  law   in  2006  considered   dependents  for                                                                    
     insurance purposes up to age  25 or for two years after                                                                    
     they  are  no  longer  claimed on  their  parents'  tax                                                                    
     returns. Since 1994 Utah  has required coverage through                                                                    
     age 26, and New  Mexico provides coverage for unmarried                                                                    
     dependents  up   to  age   25,  regardless   of  school                                                                    
     enrollment.  Texas  in 2003 allowed  full-time students                                                                    
     up to be  covered by their parents'  insurance plans to                                                                    
     age  25.    It  is   not  uncommon,   or  unreasonable,                                                                    
     therefore, that  SB 11 requires offering  family health                                                                    
     insurance coverage to dependent children up to age 26.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
2:44:59 PM                                                                                                                    
MR. OBERMEYER explained that states  are taking action to mandate                                                               
coverage  for young  adults often  allowing  for targeted  policy                                                               
options.  For example  in 2006,  New Jersey  required most  group                                                               
health  plans to  cover single  adult  dependents up  to age  30;                                                               
Massachusetts  considered dependents  up  to age  25  or for  two                                                               
years  after they  are no  longer claimed  on their  parents' tax                                                               
returns. Since  1994, Utah has  required coverage through  age 26                                                               
and New  Mexico provides  coverage through  age 25  regardless of                                                               
school enrollment.  Texas in 2003  allowed full-time  students to                                                               
be  covered to  age 25.  It is  not unreasonable  that this  bill                                                               
requires offering  family health  plans to dependent  children up                                                               
to age 26.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  DYSON asked  Mr. Obermeyer  if state  schools no  longer                                                               
offer health coverage for students.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
MR.  OBERMEYER answered  that most  still  offer it,  but it  has                                                               
become prohibitively  expensive for a  lot of students;  it might                                                               
be $1,800/yr.  or more.   Schools require it  because liabilities                                                               
are  involved in  having students  on campus.  It has  been found                                                               
that it  is less expensive  to retain students on  their parents'                                                               
policies.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
2:47:55 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR DYSON  asked if  anyone from  the insurance  industry has                                                               
addressed that issue or how much  it would cost to carry the kids                                                               
longer.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MR.  OBERMEYER answered  the  insurance  industry last  indicated                                                               
that the  cost to  continue coverage  under those  existing plans                                                               
would  not be  prohibitive.  It might  go  up several  percentage                                                               
points.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  DYSON asked  if SB  11  allows an  insurance company  to                                                               
increase the rates as necessary to extend the coverage.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
TOM OBERMEYER answered  yes, but this bill says  that kids cannot                                                               
be deleted from a policy.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  DYSON  asked  if  they've  had  any  feedback  from  the                                                               
insurance companies.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR DAVIS replied  that the only dissenting view  came from the                                                               
Small Business Association.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
2:51:51 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR  PASKVAN  moved  to  report SB  11  from  committee  with                                                               
individual recommendations  and accompanying fiscal  notes. There                                                               
being no objection it was so ordered.                                                                                           

Document Name Date/Time Subjects