A group of state regulators has adopted uniform standards for states that want to use the Interstate Insurance Product Regulation Commission to review individual long term care insurance products.

The IIPRC adopted the standards during in Seattle during a joint meeting of the IIPRC and its management committee.

The standards have been in development for several years and have been the subject of two public hearings since the IIPRC inaugurated its formal rule-making process for individual LTC policies in January, officials say.

“Adopting these standards is significant for our long term care markets,” says IIPRC Chair Mary Jo Hudson, the Ohio insurance director. “States and their consumers will benefit from having these products thoroughly reviewed under standards that include strong readability requirements, consumer-friendly benefit trigger requirements, and prohibition of mental health and nervous disorder exclusions.”

The standards would only apply to new products filed with the IIPRC and will not affect existing LTC products approved by a state or to closed blocks of business.

The standards are expected to become available for filing before the end of 2010, officials say.

The IIPRC also adopted a non-binding resolution to ask the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, Kansas City, Mo., to review the possibility of creating a national LTC consumer protection program. That proposal also would cover individuals who own LTC insurance products that existed before rate-stabilization measures were put in effect, officials say.