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California Health Insurance Legislative News (Lots of it!)

Big day in Sacramento today. And with 8/31 deadlines looming, we will likely see more activity.

California AB 1602 (Perez) and SB 900 (Alquist) has passed and is awaiting the Governor's signature to make it law. AB 1602 sets up the California health insurance exchange. I expect this to be signed as Gov Schwarzenegger indicated earlier this year that he wants the exchange model set up before he leaves office.

SB 900 sets up the exchanges, and AB 1602 which is a companion bill delineates the specific duties of the exchange.

AB 1825 has passed the Senate and now goes back to the Assembly for final action. AB 1825 requires mandatory maternity benefits on all health plans sold in the individual market.

AB 2244 prohibits insurers from refusing coverage to children simply because they have a pre-existing condition. AB 2244 also goes back to Assembly now for final action.

Other Bills to watch:

SB 890 (Alquist) - sets requirement for health plans to offer only 5 plan designs either inside or outside of the exchange. Gold, Silver, Bronze, Platinum and Catastrophic.

AB 2345 (De La Torre) - prevents insurers from charging an additional co-pay for cancer screenings and other types of preventive care

AB 2042 - (Feuer) - prohibits insurers from raising premiums more than once per year.

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