The Business Council strongly supports S.3042 (Gallivan) that requires that the New York State Health Care Quality and Cost Containment Commission be seated in a timely manner and includes appointees with the qualifications to accurately assess healthcare mandates and the costs of implementation of the federal Affordable Care Act. The bill requires a complete quality and cost review of all mandated benefits currently in existence, and requires follow up reviews of all mandated benefits every three years. Following these reviews, the commission will issue recommendations for the repeal and/or modification of mandate benefits, which are not found to meet standards for costs and or quality, to be voted on by the legislature, without amendments.
The New York State Health Care Quality and Cost Containment Commission, created by the Legislature in 2007, was charged with analyzing the impact on health-insurance costs of proposed legislation that mandates health benefits be offered or made available in individual and group health-insurance policies, contracts and comprehensive health service plans. The Commission was also directed to study the delivery of health benefits or services and the reimbursement of health care providers. Unfortunately, this Commission has never been appointed or met.
This bill would allow a real and seated Commission promote:
- Thoughtful reviews of state mandated health insurance proposals and their costs and benefits, prior to a full vote by the legislature. Many votes today are taken with inadequate information for making an informed judgment.
- Analysis of the medical effectiveness of the particular health benefits being proposed.
Depending on how you count what a mandate is; New York has over four dozen mandates. The incremental growth of mandates has had a significant impact on the costs of health insurance in New York State and will have an even greater effect in light of the federal ACA's requirement that the State pay for any mandates beyond the Essential Health Benefits of the federal act.
New York State employers responding to Business Council surveys have overwhelmingly identified employee health care as their top cost-of-doing business concern. This bill and the long-delayed seating of the Health Care Quality and Cost Containment Commission would be a first step in the right direction.
For these reasons, the Business Council strongly supports S.3042 (Gallivan).