The Government Relations Workgroup (GRW) continues meeting regularly to review priority legislation and regulations affecting the dental benefits industry. The group will hold one more meeting in December and resume its twice a month meeting schedule in January. Below are several topics on which the group has recently focused:

NCOIL – The American Dental Association will be making a presentation at the National Council of Insurance Legislators’ (NCOIL) December meeting urging that organization to adopt a model act that contains provisions on multiple subjects, including network leasing, prior authorization, overpayment collection, virtual credit cards, and minimum loss ratio reporting for dental plans. This will be only the first step in the process, and if NCOIL decides to pursue the issue there will be an opportunity for both sides to convene panels to testify, likely at NCOIL’s March meeting.

Massachusetts – A joint House-Senate committee held a hearing on a bill that would enact new network leasing and minimum loss ratio reporting requirements for dental plans. The leasing provisions in the bill are more onerous than those recently enacted in states like New Jersey and California and require dentists to affirmatively consent to each individual leasing arrangement. NADP submitted comments in opposition, as well as joining a coalition letter opposing the bill. So far that bill has not been voted out of committee.

Ohio – The Senate recently held a hearing on SB 148, a bill that would enact a noncovered services law in Ohio. Ohio is one of a minority of states that does not yet have such a law in place. The bill uses a definition of “covered services” that is consistent with the NCOIL Model. NADP submitted comments in opposition to the bill and as of this writing the bill has not advanced any further.

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With questions on any of the above issues please contact State Affairs Manager Artur Bagyants.

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