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2016 VA H 2103
Author: Byron
Version: Introduced
Version Date: 01/10/2017

HOUSE BILL NO. 2103

Offered January 11, 2017

Prefiled January 10, 2017

A BILL to amend and reenact Sections 32.1-16, 32.1-137.2, 32.1-276.9:1, 38.2-3407.12, 38.2-3418.13, 38.2-3418.17, 38.2-3451, 38.2-4214, 38.2-4319, and 38.2-4509 of the Code of Virginia and to repeal Sections 38.2-316.1 and 38.2-326 and Article 7 (Sections 38.2-3455 through 38.2-3460) of Chapter 34 of Title 38.2 of the Code of Virginia, relating to the health insurance benefits exchange.

Patron-- Byron

Committee Referral Pending

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Virginia:

1. That Sections 32.1-16, 32.1-137.2, 32.1-276.9:1, 38.2-3407.12, 38.2-3418.13, 38.2-3418.17, 38.2-3451, 38.2-4214, 38.2-4319, and 38.2-4509 of the Code of Virginia are amended and reenacted as follows:

Section 32.1-16. State Department of Health.

A. There shall be a State Department of Health in the executive department responsible to the Secretary of Health and Human Resources. The Department shall be under the supervision and management of the State Health Commissioner. The Commissioner shall carry out his management and supervisory responsibilities in accordance with the policies, rules and regulations of the Board.

B. In addition to other duties imposed on the Department pursuant to this title, the Department shall assist in the plan management functions of the federal health benefit exchange established by the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services pursuant to Section 1321 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act codified as 42 U.S.C. Section 18041(c) in the Commonwealth, including providing assistance to the State Corporation Commission in its performance of plan management functions as set forth in Section 38.2-326. The Department shall be compensated for expenses incurred in providing such services.

Section 32.1-137.2. Certification of quality assurance; application; issuance; denial; renewal.

A. Every managed care health insurance plan licensee shall request a certificate of quality assurance with reference to its managed care health insurance plans simultaneously with filing an initial application to the Bureau of Insurance for licensure. If already licensed by the Bureau of Insurance, every managed care health insurance plan licensee may file an application for quality assurance certification with the Department of Health by December 1, 1998, and shall file an application for quality assurance certification with the Department of Health by December 1, 1999, in order to obtain its certificate of quality assurance by July 1, 2000.

On or before July 1, 2000, the State Health Commissioner shall certify to the Bureau of Insurance that a managed care health insurance plan licensee has been issued a certificate of quality assurance by providing the Bureau of Insurance with a copy of each certificate at the time of issuance.

Application for a certificate of quality assurance shall be made on a form prescribed by the Board and shall be accompanied by a fee based upon a percentage, not to exceed one-tenth of one percent, of the proportion of direct gross premium income on business done in this Commonwealth attributable to the operation of managed care health insurance plans in the preceding biennium, sufficient to cover reasonable costs for the administration of the quality assurance program. Such fee shall not exceed $10,000 per licensee. Whenever the account of the program shows expenses for the past biennium to be more than ten percent greater or lesser than the funds collected, the Board shall revise the fees levied by it for certification so that the fees are sufficient, but not excessive, to cover expenses; provided that such fees shall not exceed the limits set forth in this section. Until July 1, 2014, the Department may utilize such certification funds as are needed in fulfilling its responsibilities pursuant to subsection B of Section 32.1-16.

All applications, including those for renewal, shall require (i) a description of the geographic area to be served, with a map clearly delineating the boundaries of the service area or areas, (ii) a description of the complaint system required under Section 32.1-137.6, (iii) a description of the procedures and programs established by the licensee to assure both availability and accessibility of adequate personnel and facilities and to assess the quality of health care services provided, and (iv) a list of the licensee's managed care health insurance plans.

B. Every managed care health insurance plan licensee certified under this article shall renew its certificate of quality assurance with the Commissioner biennially by July 1, subject to payment of the fee.

C. The Commissioner shall periodically examine or review each applicant for certificate of quality assurance or for renewal thereof.

No certificate of quality assurance may be issued or renewed unless a managed care health insurance plan licensee has filed a completed application and made payment of a fee pursuant to subsection A of this section and the Commissioner is satisfied, based upon his examination, that, to the extent appropriate for the type of managed care health insurance plan under examination, the managed care health insurance plan licensee has in place and complies with: (i) a complaint system for reasonable and adequate procedures for the timely resolution of written complaints pursuant to Section 32.1-137.6; (ii) a reasonable and adequate system for assessing the satisfaction of its covered persons; (iii) a system to provide for reasonable and adequate availability of and accessibility to health care services for its covered persons; (iv) reasonable and adequate policies and procedures to encourage the appropriate provision and use of preventive services for its covered persons; (v) reasonable and adequate standards and procedures for credentialing and recredentialing the providers with whom it contracts; (vi) reasonable and adequate procedures to inform its covered persons and providers of the managed care health insurance plan licensee's policies and procedures; (vii) reasonable and adequate systems to assess, measure, and improve the health status of covered persons, including outcome measures, (viii) reasonable and adequate policies and procedures to ensure confidentiality of medical records and patient information to permit effective and confidential patient care and quality review; (ix) reasonable, timely and adequate requirements and standards pursuant to Section 32.1-137.9; and (x) such other requirements as the Board may establish by regulation consistent with this article.

Upon the issuance or reissuance of a certificate, the Commissioner shall provide a copy of such certificate to the Bureau of Insurance.

D. Upon determining to deny a certificate, the Commissioner shall notify such applicant in writing stating the reasons for the denial of a certificate. A copy of such notification of denial shall be provided to the Bureau of Insurance. Appeals from a notification of denial shall be brought by a certificate applicant pursuant to the process set forth in Section 32.1-137.5.

E. The State Corporation Commission shall give notice to the Commissioner of its intention to issue an order based upon a finding of insolvency, hazardous financial condition, or impairment of net worth or surplus to policyholders or an order suspending or revoking the license of a managed care health insurance plan licensee; and the Commissioner shall notify the Bureau of Insurance when he has reasonable cause to believe that a recommendation for the suspension or revocation of a certificate of quality assurance or the denial or nonrenewal of such a certificate may be made pursuant to this article. Such notifications shall be privileged and confidential and shall not be subject to subpoena.

F. No certificate of quality assurance issued pursuant to this article may be transferred or assigned without approval of the Commissioner.

Section 32.1-276.9:1. Health information needs related to reform; work group.

A. The Commissioner shall direct the nonprofit organization to establish a work group to study continuing health information needs and to develop recommendations for design, development, and operation of systems and strategies to meet those needs. The work group shall include representatives of the Department of Health, the Department of Medical Assistance Services, the Department of Health Professions, the State Corporation Commission's Bureau of Insurance, the Virginia Health Reform Initiative, the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association, the Virginia Association of Health Plans, the Medical Society of Virginia, health care providers, and other stakeholders and shall:

1. Identify various health information needs related to implementation of health care reform initiatives, including those associated with development and operation of an all-payer claims database, the Virginia Health Information Exchange, the Virginia Health Benefit Exchange, and any other health reform initiatives. In doing so, the work group shall identify the clinical and paid claims information required and the purposes for which such information will be used; and

2. Identify opportunities for maximizing efficiency and effectiveness of health information systems, reducing duplication of effort related to collection of health information, and minimizing costs and risks associated with collection and use of health information.

B. The Commissioner shall report on activities, findings, and recommendations of the work group annually to the Governor and the General Assembly no later than December 1 of each year, beginning in 2014.

Section 38.2-3407.12. Patient optional point-of-service benefit.

A. As used in this section:

"Affiliate" shall have the meaning set forth in Section 38.2-1322.

"Allowable charge" means the amount from which the carrier's payment to a provider for any covered item or service is determined before taking into account any cost-sharing arrangement.

"Carrier" means:

1. Any insurer licensed under this title proposing to offer or issue accident and sickness insurance policies which are subject to Chapter 34 (Section 38.2-3400 et seq.) or 39 (Section 38.2-3900 et seq.) of this title;

2. Any nonstock corporation licensed under this title proposing to issue or deliver subscription contracts for one or more health services plans, medical or surgical services plans or hospital services plans which are subject to Chapter 42 (Section 38.2-4200 et seq.) of this title;

3. Any health maintenance organization licensed under this title which provides or arranges for the provision of one or more health care plans which are subject to Chapter 43 (Section 38.2-4300 et seq.) of this title;

4. Any nonstock corporation licensed under this title proposing to issue or deliver subscription contracts for one or more dental or optometric services plans which are subject to Chapter 45 (Section 38.2-4500 et seq.) of this title; and

5. Any other person licensed under this title which provides or arranges for the provision of health care coverage or benefits or health care plans or provider panels which are subject to regulation as the business of insurance under this title.

"Co-insurance" means the portion of the carrier's allowable charge for the covered item or service which is not paid by the carrier and for which the enrollee is responsible.

"Co-payment" means the out-of-pocket charge other than co-insurance or a deductible for an item or service to be paid by the enrollee to the provider towards the allowable charge as a condition of the receipt of specific health care items and services.

"Cost sharing arrangement" means any co-insurance, co-payment, deductible or similar arrangement imposed by the carrier on the enrollee as a condition to or consequence of the receipt of covered items or services.

"Deductible" means the dollar amount of a covered item or service which the enrollee is obligated to pay before benefits are payable under the carrier's policy or contract with the group contract holder.

"Enrollee" or "member" means any individual who is enrolled in a group health benefit plan provided or arranged by a health maintenance organization or other carrier. If a health maintenance organization arranges or contracts for the point-of-service benefit required under this section through another carrier, any enrollee selecting the point-of-service benefit shall be treated as an enrollee of that other carrier when receiving covered items or services under the point-of-service benefit.

"Group contract holder" means any contract holder of a group health benefit plan offered or arranged by a health maintenance organization or other carrier. For purposes of this section, the group contract holder shall be the person to which the group agreement or contract for the group health benefit plan is issued.

"Group health benefit plan" shall mean any health care plan, subscription contract, evidence of coverage, certificate, health services plan, medical or hospital services plan, accident and sickness insurance policy or certificate, or other similar certificate, policy, contract or arrangement, and any endorsement or rider thereto, offered, arranged or issued by a carrier to a group contract holder to cover all or a portion of the cost of enrollees (or their eligible dependents) receiving covered health care items or services. Group health benefit plan does not mean (i) health care plans, contracts or policies issued in the individual market; (ii) coverages issued pursuant to Title XVIII of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. Section 1395 et seq. (Medicare), Title XIX of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. Section 1396 et seq. (Medicaid) or Title XXI of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. Section 1397aa et seq. (CHIP), 5 U.S.C. Section 8901 et seq. (federal employees), 10 U.S.C. Section 1071 et seq. (TRICARE) or Chapter 28 (Section 2.2-2800 et seq.) of Title 2.2 (state employees); (iii) accident only, credit or disability insurance, or long-term care insurance, plans providing only limited health care services under Section 38.2-4300 (unless offered by endorsement or rider to a group health benefit plan), TRICARE supplement, Medicare supplement, or workers' compensation coverages; or (iv) an employee welfare benefit plan (as defined in section 3 (1) of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, 29 U.S.C. Section 1002 (1)), which is self-insured or self-funded.

"Group specific administrative cost" means the direct administrative cost incurred by a carrier related to the offer of the point-of-service benefit to a particular group contract holder.

"Health care plan" shall have the meaning set forth in Section 38.2-4300.

"Person" means any individual, corporation, trust, association, partnership, limited liability company, organization or other entity.

"Point-of-service benefit" means a health maintenance organization's delivery system or covered benefits, or the delivery system or covered benefits of another carrier under contract or arrangement with the health maintenance organization, which permit an enrollee (and eligible dependents) to receive covered items and services outside of the provider panel, including optometrists and clinical psychologists, of the health maintenance organization under the terms and conditions of the group contract holder's group health benefit plan with the health maintenance organization or with another carrier arranged by or under contract with the health maintenance organization and which otherwise complies with this section. Without limiting the foregoing, the benefits offered or arranged by a carrier's indemnity group accident and sickness policy under Chapter 34 (Section 38.2-3400 et seq.) of this title, health services plan under Chapter 42 (Section 38.2-4200 et seq.) of this title or preferred provider organization plan under Chapter 34 (Section 38.2-3400 et seq.) or 42 (Section 38.2-4200 et seq.) of this title which permit an enrollee (and eligible dependents) to receive the full range of covered items and services outside of a provider panel, including optometrists and clinical psychologists, and which are otherwise in compliance with applicable law and this section shall constitute a point-of-service benefit.

"Preferred provider organization plan" means a health benefit program offered pursuant to a preferred provider policy or contract under Section 38.2-3407 or covered services offered under a preferred provider subscription contract under Section 38.2-4209.

"Provider" means any physician, hospital or other person, including optometrists and clinical psychologists, that is licensed or otherwise authorized in the Commonwealth to deliver or furnish health care items or services.

"Provider panel" means the participating providers or referral providers who have a contract, agreement or arrangement with a health maintenance organization or other carrier, either directly or through an intermediary, and who have agreed to provide items or services to enrollees of the health maintenance organization or other carrier.

B. To the maximum extent permitted by applicable law, every health care plan offered or proposed to be offered in the large group market in the Commonwealth by a health maintenance organization licensed under this title to a group contract holder shall provide or include, or the health maintenance organization shall arrange for or contract with another carrier to provide or include, a point-of-service benefit to be provided or offered in conjunction with the health maintenance organization's health care plan as an additional benefit for the enrollee, at the enrollee's option, individually to accept or reject. In connection with its group enrollment application, every health maintenance organization shall, at no additional cost to the group contract holder, make available or arrange with a carrier to make available to the prospective group contract holder and to all prospective enrollees, in advance of initial enrollment and in advance of each reenrollment, a notice in form and substance acceptable to the Commission which accurately and completely explains to the group contract holder and prospective enrollee the point-of-service benefit and permits each enrollee to make his or her election. The form of notice provided in connection with any reenrollment may be the same as the approved form of notice used in connection with initial enrollment and may be made available to the group contract holder and prospective enrollee by the carrier in any reasonable manner.

C. To the extent permitted under applicable law, a health maintenance organization providing or arranging, or contracting with another carrier to provide, the point-of-service benefit under this section and a carrier providing the point-of-service benefit required under this section under arrangement or contract with a health maintenance organization:

1. May not impose, or permit to be imposed, a minimum enrollee participation level on the point-of-service benefit alone;

2. May not refuse to reimburse a provider of the type listed or referred to in Section 38.2-3408 or 38.2-4221 for items or services provided under the point-of-service benefit required under this section solely on the basis of the license or certification of the provider to provide such items or services if the carrier otherwise covers the items or services provided and the provision of the items or services is within the provider's lawful scope of practice or authority; and

3. Shall rate and underwrite all prospective enrollees of the group contract holder as a single group prior to any enrollee electing to accept or reject the point-of-service benefit.

D. The premium imposed by a carrier with respect to enrollees who select the point-of-service benefit may be different from that imposed by the health maintenance organization with respect to enrollees who do not select the point-of-service benefit. Unless a group contract holder determines otherwise, any enrollee who accepts the point-of-service benefit shall be responsible for the payment of any premium over the amount of the premium applicable to an enrollee who selects the coverage offered by the health maintenance organization without the point-of-service benefit and for any identifiable group specific administrative cost incurred directly by the carrier or any administrative cost incurred by the group contract holder in offering the point-of-service benefit to the enrollee. If a carrier offers the point-of-service benefit to a group contract holder where no enrollees of the group contract holder elect to accept the point-of-service benefit and incurs an identifiable group specific administrative cost directly as a consequence of the offering to that group contract holder, the carrier may reflect that group specific administrative cost in the premium charged to other enrollees selecting the point-of-service benefit under this section. Unless the group contract holder otherwise directs or authorizes the carrier in writing, the carrier shall make reasonable efforts to ensure that no portion of the cost of offering or arranging the point-of-service benefit shall be reflected in the premium charged by the carrier to the group contract holder for a group health benefit plan without the point-of-service benefit. Any premium differential and any group specific administrative cost imposed by a carrier relating to the cost of offering or arranging the point-of-service benefit must be actuarially sound and supported by a sworn certification of an officer of each carrier offering or arranging the point-of-service benefit filed with the Commission certifying that the premiums are based on sound actuarial principles and otherwise comply with this section. The certifications shall be in a form, and shall be accompanied by such supporting information in a form acceptable to the Commission.

E. Any carrier may impose different co-insurance, co-payments, deductibles and other cost-sharing arrangements for the point-of-service benefit required under this section based on whether or not the item or service is provided through the provider panel of the health maintenance organization; provided that, except to the extent otherwise prohibited by applicable law, any such cost-sharing arrangement:

1. Shall not impose on the enrollee (or his or her eligible dependents, as appropriate) any co-insurance percentage obligation which is payable by the enrollee which exceeds the greater of: (i) thirty percent of the carrier's allowable charge for the items or services provided by the provider under the point-of-service benefit or (ii) the co-insurance amount which would have been required had the covered items or services been received through the provider panel;

2. Shall not impose on an enrollee (or his or her eligible dependents, as appropriate) a co-payment or deductible which exceeds the greatest co-payment or deductible, respectively, imposed by the carrier or its affiliate under one or more other group health benefit plans providing a point-of-service benefit which are currently offered and actively marketed by the carrier or its affiliate in the Commonwealth and are subject to regulation under this title; and

3. Shall not result in annual aggregate cost-sharing payments to the enrollee (or his or her eligible dependents, as appropriate) which exceed the greatest annual aggregate cost-sharing payments which would apply had the covered items or services been received under another group health benefit plan providing a point-of-service benefit which is currently offered and actively marketed by the carrier or its affiliate in the Commonwealth and which is subject to regulation under this title.

F. Except to the extent otherwise required under applicable law, any carrier providing the point-of-service benefit required under this section may not utilize an allowable charge or basis for determining the amount to be reimbursed or paid to any provider from which covered items or services are received under the point-of-service benefit which is not at least as favorable to the provider as that used:

1. By the carrier or its affiliate in calculating the reimbursement or payment to be made to similarly situated providers under another group health benefit plan providing a point-of-service benefit which is subject to regulation under this title and which is currently offered or arranged by the carrier or its affiliate and actively marketed in the Commonwealth, if the carrier or its affiliate offers or arranges another such group health benefit plan providing a point-of-service benefit in the Commonwealth; or

2. By the health maintenance organization in calculating the reimbursement or payment to be made to similarly situated providers on its provider panel.

G. Except as expressly permitted in this section or required under applicable law, no carrier shall impose on any person receiving or providing health care items or services under the point-of-service benefit any condition or penalty designed to discourage the enrollee's selection or use of the point-of-service benefit, which is not otherwise similarly imposed either: (i) on enrollees in another group health benefit plan, if any, currently offered or arranged and actively marketed by the carrier or its affiliate in the Commonwealth or (ii) on enrollees who receive the covered items or services from the health maintenance organization's provider panel. Nothing in this section shall preclude a carrier offering or arranging a point-of-service benefit from imposing on enrollees selecting the point-of-service benefit reasonable utilization review, preadmission certification or precertification requirements or other utilization or cost control measures which are similarly imposed on enrollees participating in one or more other group health benefit plans which are subject to regulation under this title and are currently offered and actively marketed by the carrier or its affiliates in the Commonwealth or which are otherwise required under applicable law.

H. Except as expressly otherwise permitted in this section or as otherwise required under applicable law, the scope of the health care items and services which are covered under the point-of-service benefit required under this section shall at least include the same health care items and services which would be covered if provided under the health maintenance organization's health care plan, including without limitation any items or services covered under a rider or endorsement to the applicable health care plan. Carriers shall be required to disclose prominently in all group health benefit plans and in all marketing materials utilized with respect to such group health benefit plans that the scope of the benefits provided under the point-of-service option are at least as great as those provided through the HMO's health care plan for that group. Filings of point-of-service benefits submitted to the Commission shall be accompanied by a certification signed by an officer of the filing carrier certifying that the scope of the point-of-service benefits includes at a minimum the same health care items and services as are provided under the HMO's group health care plan for that group.

I. Nothing in this section shall prohibit a health maintenance organization from offering or arranging the point-of-service benefit (i) as a separate group health benefit plan or under a different name than the health maintenance organization's group health benefit plan which does not contain the point-of-service benefit or (ii) from managing a group health benefit plan under which the point-of-service benefit is offered in a manner which separates or otherwise differentiates it from the group health benefit plan which does not contain the point-of-service benefit.

J. Notwithstanding anything in this section to the contrary, to the extent permitted under applicable law, no health maintenance organization shall be required to offer or arrange a point-of-service benefit under this section with respect to any group health benefit plan offered to a group contract holder if the health maintenance organization determines in good faith that the group contract holder will be concurrently offering another group health benefit plan or a self-insured or self-funded health benefit plan which allows the enrollees to access care from their provider of choice whether or not the provider is a member of the health maintenance organization's panel.

K. This section shall apply only to group health benefit plans issued in the Commonwealth in the commercial large group market by carriers regulated by this title and shall not apply to (i) health care plans, contracts or policies issued in the individual or small group market; (ii) coverages issued pursuant to Title XVIII of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. Section 1395 et seq. (Medicare), Title XIX of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. Section 1396 et seq. (Medicaid) or Title XXI of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. Section 1397aa et seq. (CHIP), 5 U.S.C. Section 8901 et seq. (federal employees), 10 U.S.C. Section 1071 et seq. (TRICARE) or Chapter 28 (Section 2.2-2800 et seq.) of Title 2.2 (state employees); (iii) accident only, credit or disability insurance, or long-term care insurance, plans providing only limited health care services under Section 38.2-4300 (unless offered by endorsement or rider to a group health benefit plan), TRICARE supplement, Medicare supplement, or workers' compensation coverages; or (iv) an employee welfare benefit plan (as defined in section 3 (1) of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, 29 U.S.C. Section 1002 (1)), which is self-insured or self-funded; or (v) a qualified health plan when the plan is offered in the Commonwealth by a health carrier through a health benefit exchange established under Section 1311 of the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (P.L. 111-148).

L. Nothing in this section shall operate to limit any rights or obligations arising under Section 38.2-3407, 38.2-3407.7, 38.2-3407.10, 38.2-3407.11, 38.2-4209, 38.2-4209.1, 38.2-4312, or 38.2-4312.1.

Section 38.2-3418.13. Coverage for the treatment of morbid obesity.

A. Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 38.2-3419, in the large group market, each insurer proposing to issue accident and sickness insurance policies providing hospital, medical and surgical, or major medical coverage on an expense-incurred basis; each corporation providing accident and sickness subscription contracts; and each health maintenance organization providing a health care plan for health care services shall offer and make available coverage under any such policy, contract or plan for the treatment of morbid obesity through gastric bypass surgery or such other methods as may be recognized by the National Institutes of Health as effective for the long-term reversal of morbid obesity.

B. The reimbursement for the treatment of morbid obesity shall be determined according to the same formula by which charges are developed for other medical and surgical procedures. Such coverage shall have durational limits, dollar limits, deductibles, copayments and coinsurance factors that are no less favorable than for physical illness generally. Standards and criteria, including those related to diet, used by insurers to approve or restrict access to surgery for morbid obesity shall be based upon current clinical guidelines recognized by the National Institutes of Health.

C. For purposes of this section, "morbid obesity" means (i) a weight that is at least 100 pounds over or twice the ideal weight for frame, age, height, and gender as specified in the 1983 Metropolitan Life Insurance tables, (ii) a body mass index (BMI) equal to or greater than 35 kilograms per meter squared with comorbidity or coexisting medical conditions such as hypertension, cardiopulmonary conditions, sleep apnea, or diabetes, or (iii) a BMI of 40 kilograms per meter squared without such comorbidity. As used herein, BMI equals weight in kilograms divided by height in meters squared.

D. The provisions of this section shall not apply to short-term travel, accident-only, limited or specified disease policies or contracts designed for issuance to persons eligible for coverage under Title XVIII of the Social Security Act, known as Medicare, or any other similar coverage under state or governmental plans or to short-term nonrenewable policies of not more than six months' duration; or health care plans, contracts, or policies issued in the individual or small group market; or a qualified health plan when the plan is offered in the Commonwealth by a health carrier through a health benefit exchange established under Section 1311 of the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (P.L. 111-148).

Section 38.2-3418.17. Coverage for autism spectrum disorder.

A. Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 38.2-3419 and any other provision of law, each insurer proposing to issue group accident and sickness insurance policies providing hospital, medical and surgical, or major medical coverage on an expense-incurred basis; each corporation providing group accident and sickness subscription contracts; and each health maintenance organization providing a health care plan for health care services shall, as provided in this section, provide coverage for the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder and the treatment of autism spectrum disorder, in individuals (i) from January 1, 2012, until January 1, 2016, from age two years through age six years and (ii) from and after January 1, 2016, from age two years through age 10 years, subject to the annual maximum benefit limitation set forth in subsection K and to provisions of subsection G. If an individual who is being treated for autism spectrum disorder becomes older than the applicable maximum age set forth in the preceding sentence and continues to need treatment, this section does not preclude coverage of treatment and services. In addition to the requirements imposed on health insurance issuers by Section 38.2-3436, an insurer shall not terminate coverage or refuse to deliver, issue, amend, adjust, or renew coverage of an individual solely because the individual is diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder or has received treatment for autism spectrum disorder.

B. For purposes of this section:

"Applied behavior analysis" means the design, implementation, and evaluation of environmental modifications, using behavioral stimuli and consequences, to produce socially significant improvement in human behavior, including the use of direct observation, measurement, and functional analysis of the relationship between environment and behavior.

"Autism spectrum disorder" means any pervasive developmental disorder, including (i) autistic disorder, (ii) Asperger's Syndrome, (iii) Rett syndrome, (iv) childhood disintegrative disorder, or (v) Pervasive Developmental Disorder -- Not Otherwise Specified, as defined in the most recent edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders of the American Psychiatric Association.

"Behavioral health treatment" means professional, counseling, and guidance services and treatment programs that are necessary to develop, maintain, or restore, to the maximum extent practicable, the functioning of an individual.

"Diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder" means medically necessary assessments, evaluations, or tests to diagnose whether an individual has an autism spectrum disorder.

"Medically necessary" means based upon evidence and reasonably expected to do any of the following: (i) prevent the onset of an illness, condition, injury, or disability; (ii) reduce or ameliorate the physical, mental, or developmental effects of an illness, condition, injury, or disability; or (iii) assist to achieve or maintain maximum functional capacity in performing daily activities, taking into account both the functional capacity of the individual and the functional capacities that are appropriate for individuals of the same age.

"Pharmacy care" means medications prescribed by a licensed physician and any health-related services deemed medically necessary to determine the need or effectiveness of the medications.

"Psychiatric care" means direct or consultative services provided by a psychiatrist licensed in the state in which the psychiatrist practices.

"Psychological care" means direct or consultative services provided by a psychologist licensed in the state in which the psychologist practices.

"Therapeutic care" means services provided by licensed or certified speech therapists, occupational therapists, physical therapists, or clinical social workers.

"Treatment for autism spectrum disorder" shall be identified in a treatment plan and includes the following care prescribed or ordered for an individual diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder by a licensed physician or a licensed psychologist who determines the care to be medically necessary: (i) behavioral health treatment, (ii) pharmacy care, (iii) psychiatric care, (iv) psychological care, (v) therapeutic care, and (vi) applied behavior analysis when provided or supervised by a board certified behavior analyst who shall be licensed by the Board of Medicine. The prescribing practitioner shall be independent of the provider of applied behavior analysis.

"Treatment plan" means a plan for the treatment of autism spectrum disorder developed by a licensed physician or a licensed psychologist pursuant to a comprehensive evaluation or reevaluation performed in a manner consistent with the most recent clinical report or recommendation of the American Academy of Pediatrics or the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

C. Except for inpatient services, if an individual is receiving treatment for an autism spectrum disorder, an insurer, corporation, or health maintenance organization shall have the right to request a review of that treatment, including an independent review, not more than once every 12 months unless the insurer, corporation, or health maintenance organization and the individual's licensed physician or licensed psychologist agree that a more frequent review is necessary. The cost of obtaining any review, including an independent review, shall be covered under the policy, contract, or plan.

D. Coverage under this section will not be subject to any visit limits, and shall be neither different nor separate from coverage for any other illness, condition, or disorder for purposes of determining deductibles, lifetime dollar limits, copayment and coinsurance factors, and benefit year maximum for deductibles and copayment and coinsurance factors.

E. Nothing shall preclude the undertaking of usual and customary procedures, including prior authorization, to determine the appropriateness of, and medical necessity for, treatment of autism spectrum disorder under this section, provided that all such appropriateness and medical necessity determinations are made in the same manner as those determinations are made for the treatment of any other illness, condition, or disorder covered by such policy, contract, or plan.

F. The provisions of this section shall not apply to (i) short-term travel, accident only, limited, or specified disease policies; (ii) short-term nonrenewable policies of not more than six months' duration; (iii) policies, contracts, or plans issued in the individual market or small group markets; or (iv) policies or contracts designed for issuance to persons eligible for coverage under Title XVIII of the Social Security Act, known as Medicare, or any other similar coverage under state or federal governmental plans.

G. The requirements of this section requiring that coverage be provided with regard to individuals from age two years through age six years shall apply to all insurance policies, subscription contracts, and health care plans delivered, issued for delivery, reissued, or extended on or after January 1, 2012, but prior to January 1, 2016, and the requirements of this section requiring that coverage be provided with regard to individuals from age two years through age 10 years shall apply to all insurance policies, subscription contracts, and health care plans delivered, issued for delivery, reissued, or extended on or after January 1, 2016, and to all such policies, contracts, or plans to which a term is changed or any premium adjustment is made on or after such date.

H. Any coverage required pursuant to this section shall be in addition to the coverage required by Section 38.2-3418.5 and other provisions of law. This section shall not be construed as diminishing any coverage required by Section 38.2-3412.1. This section shall not be construed as affecting any obligation to provide services to an individual under an individualized family service plan, an individualized education program, or an individualized service plan.

I. Pursuant to the provisions of Section 2.2-2818.2, this section shall apply to health coverage offered to state employees pursuant to Section 2.2-2818 and to health insurance coverage offered to employees of local governments, local officers, teachers, and retirees, and the dependents of such employees, teachers, and retirees pursuant to Section 2.2-1204.

J. Notwithstanding any provision of this section to the contrary

1. An insurer, corporation, or health maintenance organization, or a governmental entity providing coverage for such treatment pursuant to subsection I, is exempt from providing coverage for behavioral health treatment required under this section and not covered by the insurer, corporation, health maintenance organization, or governmental entity providing coverage for such treatment pursuant to subsection I as of December 31, 2011, if:

a. An actuary, affiliated with the insurer, corporation, or health maintenance organization, who is a member of the American Academy of Actuaries and meets the American Academy of Actuaries' professional qualification standards for rendering an actuarial opinion related to health insurance rate making, certifies in writing to the Commissioner of Insurance that:

(1) Based on an analysis to be completed no more frequently than one time per year by each insurer, corporation, or health maintenance organization, or such governmental entity, for the most recent experience period of at least one year's duration, the costs associated with coverage of behavioral health treatment required under this section, and not covered as of December 31, 2011, exceeded one percent of the premiums charged over the experience period by the insurer, corporation, or health maintenance organization; and

(2) Those costs solely would lead to an increase in average premiums charged of more than one percent for all insurance policies, subscription contracts, or health care plans commencing on inception or the next renewal date, based on the premium rating methodology and practices the insurer, corporation, or health maintenance organization, or such governmental entity, employs; and

b. The Commissioner approves the certification of the actuary;

2. An exemption allowed under subdivision 1 shall apply for a one-year coverage period following inception or next renewal date of all insurance policies, subscription contracts, or health care plans issued or renewed during the one-year period following the date of the exemption, after which the insurer, corporation, or health maintenance organization, or such governmental entity, shall again provide coverage for behavioral health treatment required under this section;

3. An insurer, corporation, or health maintenance organization, or such governmental entity, may claim an exemption for a subsequent year, but only if the conditions specified in subdivision 1 again are met; and

4. Notwithstanding the exemption allowed under subdivision 1, an insurer, corporation, or health maintenance organization, or such a governmental entity, may elect to continue to provide coverage for behavioral health treatment required under this section.

K. Coverage for applied behavior analysis under this section will be subject to an annual maximum benefit of $35,000, unless the insurer, corporation, or health maintenance organization elects to provide coverage in a greater amount.

L. As of January 1, 2014, to the extent that this section requires benefits that exceed the essential health benefits specified under Section 1302(b) of the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (H.R. 3590), as amended (the ACA), the specific benefits that exceed the specified essential health benefits shall not be required of a qualified health plan when the plan is offered in the Commonwealth by a health carrier through a health benefit exchange established under Section 1311 of the ACA. Nothing in this subsection shall nullify application of this section to plans offered outside such an exchange.

Section 38.2-3451. Essential health benefits.

A. Notwithstanding any provision of Section 38.2-3431 or any other section of this title to the contrary, a health carrier offering a health benefit plan providing individual or small group health insurance coverage shall provide that such coverage includes the essential health benefits as required by Section 1302(a) of the PPACA. The essential health benefits package may also include associated cost-sharing requirements or limitations. No qualified health insurance plan that is sold or offered for sale through an exchange established or operating in the Commonwealth shall provide coverage for abortions, regardless of whether such coverage is provided through the plan or is offered as a separate optional rider thereto, provided that such limitation shall not apply to an abortion performed (i) when the life of the mother is endangered by a physical disorder, physical illness, or physical injury, including a life-endangering physical condition caused by or arising from the pregnancy itself, or (ii) when the pregnancy is the result of an alleged act of rape or incest.

B. The provisions of subsection A regarding the inclusion of the PPACA-required minimum essential pediatric oral health benefits shall be deemed to be satisfied for health benefit plans made available in the small group market or individual market in the Commonwealth outside an exchange, as defined in Section 38.2-3455, issued for policy or plan years beginning on or after January 1, 2015, that do not include the PPACA-required minimum essential pediatric oral health benefits if the health carrier has obtained reasonable assurance that such pediatric oral health benefits are provided to the purchaser of the health benefit plan. The health carrier shall be deemed to have obtained reasonable assurance that such pediatric oral health benefits are provided to the purchaser of the health benefit plan if:

1. At least one qualified dental plan, as defined in Section 38.2-3455, (i) offers the minimum essential pediatric oral health benefits that are required under the PPACA and (ii) is available for purchase by the small group or individual purchaser; and

2. The health carrier prominently discloses, in a form approved by the Commission, at the time that it offers the health benefit plan that the plan does not provide the PPACA-required minimum essential pediatric oral health benefits.

Section 38.2-4214. Application of certain provisions of law.

No provision of this title except this chapter and, insofar as they are not inconsistent with this chapter, Sections 38.2-200, 38.2-203, 38.2-209 through 38.2-213, 38.2-218 through 38.2-225, 38.2-230, 38.2-232, 38.2-305, 38.2-316, 38.2-316.1, 38.2-322, 38.2-325, 38.2-326, 38.2-400, 38.2-402 through 38.2-413, 38.2-500 through 38.2-515, 38.2-600 through 38.2-620, 38.2-700 through 38.2-705, 38.2-900 through 38.2-904, 38.2-1017, 38.2-1018, 38.2-1038, 38.2-1040 through 38.2-1044, Articles 1 (Section 38.2-1300 et seq.) and 2 (Section 38.2-1306.2 et seq.) of Chapter 13, Sections 38.2-1312, 38.2-1314, 38.2-1315.1, 38.2-1317 through 38.2-1328, 38.2-1334, 38.2-1340, 38.2-1400 through 38.2-1442, 38.2-1446, 38.2-1447, 38.2-1800 through 38.2-1836, 38.2-3400, 38.2-3401, 38.2-3404, 38.2-3405, 38.2-3405.1, 38.2-3406.1, 38.2-3406.2, 38.2-3407.1 through 38.2-3407.6:1, 38.2-3407.9 through 38.2-3407.19, 38.2-3409, 38.2-3411 through 38.2-3419.1, 38.2-3430.1 through 38.2-3454, 38.2-3501, 38.2-3502, subdivision 13 of Section 38.2-3503, subdivision 8 of Section 38.2-3504, Sections 38.2-3514.1, 38.2-3514.2, Sections 38.2-3516 through 38.2-3520 as they apply to Medicare supplement policies, Sections 38.2-3522.1 through 38.2-3523.4, 38.2-3525, 38.2-3540.1, 38.2-3541 through 38.2-3542, 38.2-3543.2, Article 5 (Section 38.2-3551 et seq.) of Chapter 35, Chapter 35.1 (Section 38.2-3556 et seq.), Sections 38.2-3600 through 38.2-3607, Chapter 52 (Section 38.2-5200 et seq.), Chapter 55 (Section 38.2-5500 et seq.), and Chapter 58 (Section 38.2-5800 et seq.) of this title shall apply to the operation of a plan.

Section 38.2-4319. Statutory construction and relationship to other laws.

A. No provisions of this title except this chapter and, insofar as they are not inconsistent with this chapter, Sections 38.2-100, 38.2-136, 38.2-200, 38.2-203, 38.2-209 through 38.2-213, 38.2-216, 38.2-218 through 38.2-225, 38.2-229, 38.2-232, 38.2-305, 38.2-316, 38.2-316.1, 38.2-322, 38.2-325, 38.2-326, 38.2-400, 38.2-402 through 38.2-413, 38.2-500 through 38.2-515, 38.2-600 through 38.2-620, Chapter 9 (Section 38.2-900 et seq.), Sections 38.2-1016.1 through 38.2-1023, 38.2-1057, 38.2-1306.1, Article 2 (Section 38.2-1306.2 et seq.), Section 38.2-1315.1, Articles 3.1 (Section 38.2-1316.1 et seq.), 4 (Section 38.2-1317 et seq.), 5 (Section 38.2-1322 et seq.), and 5.1 (Section 38.2-1334.3 et seq.) of Chapter 13, Articles 1 (Section 38.2-1400 et seq.), 2 (Section 38.2-1412 et seq.), and 4 (Section 38.2-1446 et seq. ) of Chapter 14, Sections 38.2-1800 through 38.2-1836, 38.2-3401, 38.2-3405, 38.2-3405.1, 38.2-3406.1, 38.2-3407.2 through 38.2-3407.6:1, 38.2-3407.9 through 38.2-3407.19, 38.2-3411, 38.2-3411.2, 38.2-3411.3, 38.2-3411.4, 38.2-3412.1, 38.2-3414.1, 38.2-3418.1 through 38.2-3418.17, 38.2-3419.1, 38.2-3430.1 through 38.2-3454, 38.2-3500, subdivision 13 of Section 38.2-3503, subdivision 8 of Section 38.2-3504, Sections 38.2-3514.1, 38.2-3514.2, 38.2-3522.1 through 38.2-3523.4, 38.2-3525, 38.2-3540.1, 38.2-3540.2, 38.2-3541.2, 38.2-3542, 38.2-3543.2, Article 5 (Section 38.2-3551 et seq.) of Chapter 35, Chapter 35.1 (Section 38.2-3556 et seq.), Chapter 52 (Section 38.2-5200 et seq.), Chapter 55 (Section 38.2-5500 et seq.), and Chapter 58 (Section 38.2-5800 et seq.) shall be applicable to any health maintenance organization granted a license under this chapter. This chapter shall not apply to an insurer or health services plan licensed and regulated in conformance with the insurance laws or Chapter 42 (Section 38.2-4200 et seq.) except with respect to the activities of its health maintenance organization.

B. For plans administered by the Department of Medical Assistance Services that provide benefits pursuant to Title XIX or Title XXI of the Social Security Act, as amended, no provisions of this title except this chapter and, insofar as they are not inconsistent with this chapter, Sections 38.2-100, 38.2-136, 38.2-200, 38.2-203, 38.2-209 through 38.2-213, 38.2-216, 38.2-218 through 38.2-225, 38.2-229, 38.2-232, 38.2-322, 38.2-325, 38.2-400, 38.2-402 through 38.2-413, 38.2-500 through 38.2-515, 38.2-600 through 38.2-620, Chapter 9 (Section 38.2-900 et seq.), Sections 38.2-1016.1 through 38.2-1023, 38.2-1057, 38.2-1306.1, Article 2 (Section 38.2-1306.2 et seq.), Section 38.2-1315.1, Articles 3.1 (Section 38.2-1316.1 et seq.), 4 (Section 38.2-1317 et seq.), 5 (Section 38.2-1322 et seq.), and 5.1 (Section 38.2-1334.3 et seq.) of Chapter 13, Articles 1 (Section 38.2-1400 et seq.), 2 (Section 38.2-1412 et seq.), and 4 (Section 38.2-1446 et seq.) of Chapter 14, Sections 38.2-3401, 38.2-3405, 38.2-3407.2 through 38.2-3407.5, 38.2-3407.6, 38.2-3407.6:1, 38.2-3407.9, 38.2-3407.9:01, and 38.2-3407.9:02, subdivisions F 1, F 2, and F 3 of Section 38.2-3407.10, Sections 38.2-3407.11, 38.2-3407.11:3, 38.2-3407.13, 38.2-3407.13:1, 38.2-3407.14, 38.2-3411.2, 38.2-3418.1, 38.2-3418.2, 38.2-3419.1, 38.2-3430.1 through 38.2-3437, 38.2-3500, subdivision 13 of Section 38.2-3503, subdivision 8 of Section 38.2-3504, Sections 38.2-3514.1, 38.2-3514.2, 38.2-3522.1 through 38.2-3523.4, 38.2-3525, 38.2-3540.1, 38.2-3540.2, 38.2-3541.2, 38.2-3542, 38.2-3543.2, Chapter 52 (Section 38.2-5200 et seq.), Chapter 55 (Section 38.2-5500 et seq.), and Chapter 58 (Section 38.2-5800 et seq.) shall be applicable to any health maintenance organization granted a license under this chapter. This chapter shall not apply to an insurer or health services plan licensed and regulated in conformance with the insurance laws or Chapter 42 (Section 38.2-4200 et seq.) except with respect to the activities of its health maintenance organization.

C. Solicitation of enrollees by a licensed health maintenance organization or by its representatives shall not be construed to violate any provisions of law relating to solicitation or advertising by health professionals.

D. A licensed health maintenance organization shall not be deemed to be engaged in the unlawful practice of medicine. All health care providers associated with a health maintenance organization shall be subject to all provisions of law.

E. Notwithstanding the definition of an eligible employee as set forth in Section 38.2-3431, a health maintenance organization providing health care plans pursuant to Section 38.2-3431 shall not be required to offer coverage to or accept applications from an employee who does not reside within the health maintenance organization's service area.

F. For purposes of applying this section, "insurer" when used in a section cited in subsections A and B shall be construed to mean and include "health maintenance organizations" unless the section cited clearly applies to health maintenance organizations without such construction.

Section 38.2-4509. Application of certain laws.

A. No provision of this title except this chapter and, insofar as they are not inconsistent with this chapter, Sections 38.2-200, 38.2-203, 38.2-209 through 38.2-213, 38.2-218 through 38.2-225, 38.2-229, 38.2-316, 38.2-326, 38.2-400, 38.2-402 through 38.2-413, 38.2-500 through 38.2-515, 38.2-600 through 38.2-620, 38.2-900 through 38.2-904, 38.2-1038, 38.2-1040 through 38.2-1044, Articles 1 (Section 38.2-1300 et seq.) and 2 (Section 38.2-1306.2 et seq.) of Chapter 13, Sections 38.2-1312, 38.2-1314, 38.2-1315.1, Articles 4 (Section 38.2-1317 et seq.), 5 (Section 38.2-1322 et seq.), and 6 (Section 38.2-1335 et seq.) of Chapter 13, Sections 38.2-1400 through 38.2-1442, 38.2-1446, 38.2-1447, 38.2-1800 through 38.2-1836, 38.2-3401, 38.2-3404, 38.2-3405, 38.2-3407.1, 38.2-3407.4, 38.2-3407.10, 38.2-3407.13, 38.2-3407.14, 38.2-3407.15, 38.2-3407.17, 38.2-3407.19, 38.2-3415, 38.2-3541, Article 5 (Section 38.2-3551 et seq.) of Chapter 35, Sections 38.2-3600 through 38.2-3603, Chapter 55 (Section 38.2-5500 et seq.), and Chapter 58 (Section 38.2-5800 et seq.) shall apply to the operation of a plan.

B. The provisions of subsection A of Section 38.2-322 shall apply to an optometric services plan. The provisions of subsection C of Section 38.2-322 shall apply to a dental services plan.

C. The provisions of Article 1.2 (Section 32.1-137.7 et seq.) of Chapter 5 of Title 32.1 shall not apply to either an optometric or dental services plan.

D. The provisions of Section 38.2-3407.1 shall apply to claim payments made on or after January 1, 2014. No optometric or dental services plan shall be required to pay interest computed under Section 38.2-3407.1 if the total interest is less than $5.

2. That Sections 38.2-316.1 and 38.2-326 and Article 7 (Sections 38.2-3455 through 38.2-3460) of Chapter 34 of Title 38.2 of the Code of Virginia are repealed.

3. That the provisions of this act shall become effective 60 days after the date that the provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, P.L. 111-148, as amended, that provide for the establishment of a federally operated health benefit exchange are repealed or otherwise become unenforceable.


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