NU Online News Service, March 22, 12:45 p.m. – The Hawaii House of Representatives has passed H.B. 2638, a bill that would create a statewide long-term care insurance safety net program, and sent it to the state Senate.

The bill was approved this week by the Senate Committees on Health and Human Services and is now awaiting action by the Committee on Commerce, Consumer Protection and Housing.

The Hawaii Long-Term Care Financing Act would create a panel to administer a state LTC program that would collect mandatory premiums from employee paychecks of $10 per month. Initial benefits would be $70 per day for a year. The bill would also set up a state fund to hold premiums and pay benefits.

To be eligible, individuals 25 years or older would need assistance with two or more activities of daily living for at least 90 days, or be afflicted with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.

The legislation is cosponsored by Reps. Dennis Arakaki, D-Kamehameha Heights; Marilyn Lee, D-Mililani; Calvin Say, D-Palolo Valley; and Marcus Oshiro, D-Wahiawa.