I meant to write about this earlier: Back in April, Oregon signed into law House Bill 2468, which pertains to network sufficiency and provider non-discrimination. That’s right, Oregon’s very own Section 2706.
The details regarding network sufficiency are new (from what I understand, the ACA expressed that network sufficiency was necessary but didn’t go into specifics), but the non-discrimination provision is identical to Section 2706.
This is awesome! Such great news! Unfortunately, it comes with a huge caveat: The law doesn’t take effect until January 2017.
Postponing implementation for a year and a half was an apparent concession to the insurers, allowing them to drag their feet for just a little longer before they’re forced to comply. Essentially, insurers are admitting that they don’t have to follow the federal law – they’ll only listen when the same exact law is also mandated by the state.
In the meantime, Rhode Island has passed HB 168, their own state-version of the non-discrimination provision. While the bulk of the statute (which was already in effect) pertains to insurance reimbursement specifically for certified registered nurse anesthetists, the non-discrimination language that was added does not specify any single provider type (such as the Hawaii bill from earlier this year that has currently been deferred).
The best part about this bill? It takes effect immediately. I’m very curious to see whether the insurance companies will actually fall in line without having to be forced.