The New York State Insurance Department now has the authority to review and approve health premium increases before they are implemented by carriers.
New York Gov. David Paterson, D, has signed Governor’s Program Bill Number 278 into law.
The new health rate review law replaces a “file and use” system that gave the department little authority to control health premium increases, officials say.
New York already prohibits health carriers from using health status and health history information in setting rates, but Paterson says the law is needed to ensure that health premiums are “fair and justified.”
The new law will make coverage more affordable, Paterson says.
The new law will require health insurers and health maintenance organizations to apply for New York department approval of rate increases. The rate applications will be reviewed by the department and can be approved, modified or disapproved.