June 12, 2012
PROVIDENCE – Lt. Governor Elizabeth Roberts, Chair of the Healthcare Reform Commission, applauded and thanked the Rhode Island General Assembly for passing H-7909 and S-2887, bills introduced by Rep. Brian Patrick Kennedy (D-Hopkinton) and Sen. Rhoda Perry (D-Providence). The bills place into Rhode Island law a number of the consumer-focused provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, ensuring that Rhode Island's Health Insurance Commissioner would have the authority to enforce the provisions locally.
"Rhode Islanders need and deserve a local voice to address any concerns or challenges they have with insurance companies," Roberts said. "We have a strong structure in place at the Office of the Health Insurance Commissioner aimed at protecting consumers. This legislation continues that important work."
The consumer provisions added to the state's commercial insurance market include prohibiting annual or lifetime dollar limits on coverage and dropping Rhode Islanders from coverage without good cause.
The legislation also protects Rhode Islanders with pre-existing conditions from being denied coverage or reaching an annual or lifetime coverage limit.
Additionally, insurance companies will be required to provide a standard, easy-to-read description of benefits and coverage to help Rhode Islanders better understand the terms of their policy.
For more information on these and other protections included in the bill, visit www.healthcare.ri.gov.