New Mexico regulators pursue improved short term health insurance oversight

Short Term Health Insurance - Regulators
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Officials in the state want greater control over the minimum standards for these types of plan.

New Mexico insurance regulators are seeking greater authority over the short term health insurance plans in the state. They are aiming to set the state’s minimum standards for these health plans, instead of using those established by the federal government.

The new standards will become effective through a new bill that has passed the House of Representatives.

A new short term health insurance minimum standards bill has now passed the New Mexico House of Representatives. This would give the state its own control over these forms of health insurance policy.

The bill passed the state House of Representatives 67 – 0 on Monday. It was sponsored by Representative Micaela Lara Cadena (Mesilla). The bill is now moving forward to the state Senate where it will face another vote.

New Mexico is seeking new control over short term health insurance regulations due to federal changes.

The New Mexico insurance regulators have sought to gain greater authority over the health plan regulations in response to federal changes to the Affordable Care Act. Congress repealed the tax penalty previously in place as a component of Obamacare. This removes a core incentive to encourage consumers to purchase health insurance plans.

Instead, many consumers may decide to purchase short-term policies. That said, according to federal regulations, those policies have the right to exclude coverage for pre-existing medical conditions. These health plans can also leave out a number of other forms of coverage such as benefits for maternity care, said a KRQE report.

If this bill, which has made it through the House and is now progressing through the Senate, passes, it will give the state’s own regulators the chance to set the rules. If it passes, New Mexico insurance regulators would have the authority to move away from the federal rules for short term health insurance plans. Instead, they would be able to set their own limited-benefit and short term plan rules Short Term Health Insurance - Regulatorsfor standards and benefits alike. In this way, New Mexico would also be able to make certain that an adequate amount of a patient’s premiums are spent on patient care.

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