CA residents to get renewed health coverage

About 3,400 California consumers whose individual policies were improperly revoked will soon get invitations to rejoin their health plan. The letters are being sent out as part of a batch of settlements recently announced between the state's Department of Managed Health Care and a handful of health insurers. Health plans issuing the letters include Health Net, Anthem Blue Cross of California, Blue Shield of California, Kaiser Permanente and PacifiCare, which have reached settlements over their rescission practices that included fines totaling $14 million.

The Department of Managed Health Care has ordered health plans to provide the agency with contact information for hundreds of members with rescinded policies to make sure that the members do indeed get their notices. Meanwhile, the DMHC, the state attorney general's office and health literacy experts have reviewed the noticed to make sure they'll be easily understood by consumers.

What's noteworthy, however, is that despite the fines and reinstatement of consumers, California health plans have not generally conceded that post-facto rescissions are are illegal. Most have gone into settlements screaming loudly that they'd violated no laws, despite the DMHC's firm conviction that they had. All told, it seems that even with laws on the books with arguably ban rescissions for innocent mistakes on applications, the practice is far from dead. There's more controversy to come on this issue, without a doubt.

To learn more about the reinstatements:
- read this Modern Healthcare piece

Related Articles:
WellPoint pays hospitals $11.8M to settle bills from rescissions
BC of California fined $1M for cancellations
Kaiser forced to reinstate coverage
Blue Cross of California settles plan-cancellation suits

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