HHS Details Health Insurance Requirement Plan
The Department of Health and Human Services has released requirements for private health insurance companies to include prevent medicine. This is something that many Americans have been waiting for a long time. Several of the mandates cut costs to patients and increase the likelihood that patients will use preventive medicine. By using preventive medicine techniques, overall spending will decrease on treating common, preventable illnesses.
According to the website, these requirements apply to group health plans and group health insurance issuers for plan years beginning on September 23, 2010; and apply to individual health insurance issuers for policy years beginning on September 23, 2010.
The HHS health insurance requirements include evidence-based preventive services, routine vaccines, and women and children preventive medicine. The children’s preventive care requirement follows the Bright Futures Guidelines. These include pediatrician visits, vision and hearing screening, developmental assessments, immunizations, and obesity-related care. The developmental assessments requirement is great news with the rising rates in developmental disorders, such as autism, because they have long been denied by insurance companies. Parents can breathe easier that they will be able to have their child properly assessed and diagnosed. Women’s preventive medicine requirements are still under development and will be issued by August 1, 2011.
The best news of all is these health insurance companies cannot pass on costs to patients by preventing cost sharing, deductibles, co-pays and the like. According to a press release by the HHS department, 7 out of 10 American deaths are caused by heart disease, cancer, and diabetes, which are all preventable. With the decreased costs to patients, these deaths should decrease as patients avail themselves of now affordable health care.
“The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (the Affordable Care Act), Pub. L. 111-148, was enacted on March 23, 2010; the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act (the Reconciliation Act), Pub. L. 111-152, was enacted on March 30, 2010. The Affordable Care Act and the Reconciliation Act reorganize, amend, and add to the provisions of part A of title XXVII of the Public Health Service Act (PHS Act) relating to group health plans and health insurance issuers in the group and individual markets” according to the HHS website.
A complete listing of all requirements can be found by clicking here