HOUSE BILL 1851
State of Washington 57th Legislature 2001 Regular Session
By Representative McMorris
Read first time 02/06/2001. Referred to Committee on Health Care.
AN ACT Relating to modifying the definition of small employers for insurance purposes; and amending RCW 48.43.005.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF WASHINGTON:
Sec. 1. RCW 48.43.005 and 2000 c 79 s 18 are each amended to read as follows:
Unless otherwise specifically provided, the definitions in this section apply throughout this chapter.
(1) "Adjusted community rate" means the rating method used to establish the premium for health plans adjusted to reflect actuarially demonstrated differences in utilization or cost attributable to geographic region, age, family size, and use of wellness activities.
(2) "Basic health plan" means the plan described under chapter 70.47 RCW, as revised from time to time.
(3) "Basic health plan services" means that schedule of covered health services, including the description of how those benefits are to be administered, that are required to be delivered to an enrollee under the basic health plan, as revised from time to time.
(4) "Catastrophic health plan" means:
(a) In the case of a contract, agreement, or policy covering a single enrollee, a health benefit plan requiring a calendar year deductible of, at a minimum, one thousand five hundred dollars and an annual out-of-pocket expense required to be paid under the plan (other than for premiums) for covered benefits of at least three thousand dollars; and
(b) In the case of a contract, agreement, or policy covering more than one enrollee, a health benefit plan requiring a calendar year deductible of, at a minimum, three thousand dollars and an annual out-of-pocket expense required to be paid under the plan (other than for premiums) for covered benefits of at least five thousand five hundred dollars; or
(c) Any health benefit plan that provides benefits for hospital inpatient and outpatient services, professional and prescription drugs provided in conjunction with such hospital inpatient and outpatient services, and excludes or substantially limits outpatient physician services and those services usually provided in an office setting.
(5) "Certification" means a determination by a review organization that an admission, extension of stay, or other health care service or procedure has been reviewed and, based on the information provided, meets the clinical requirements for medical necessity, appropriateness, level of care, or effectiveness under the auspices of the applicable health benefit plan.
(6) "Concurrent review" means utilization review conducted during a patient's hospital stay or course of treatment.
(7) "Covered person" or "enrollee" means a person covered by a health plan including an enrollee, subscriber, policyholder, beneficiary of a group plan, or individual covered by any other health plan.
(8) "Dependent" means, at a minimum, the enrollee's legal spouse and unmarried dependent children who qualify for coverage under the enrollee's health benefit plan.
(9) "Eligible employee" means an employee who works on a full-time basis with a normal work week of thirty or more hours. The term includes a self-employed individual, including a sole proprietor, a partner of a partnership, and may include an independent contractor, if the self-employed individual, sole proprietor, partner, or independent contractor is included as an employee under a health benefit plan of a small employer, but does not work less than thirty hours per week and derives at least seventy-five percent of his or her income from a trade or business through which he or she has attempted to earn taxable income and for which he or she has filed the appropriate internal revenue service form. Persons covered under a health benefit plan pursuant to the consolidated omnibus budget reconciliation act of 1986 shall not be considered eligible employees for purposes of minimum participation requirements of chapter 265, Laws of 1995.
(10) "Emergency medical condition" means the emergent and acute onset of a symptom or symptoms, including severe pain, that would lead a prudent layperson acting reasonably to believe that a health condition exists that requires immediate medical attention, if failure to provide medical attention would result in serious impairment to bodily functions or serious dysfunction of a bodily organ or part, or would place the person's health in serious jeopardy.
(11) "Emergency services" means otherwise covered health care services medically necessary to evaluate and treat an emergency medical condition, provided in a hospital emergency department.
(12) "Enrollee point-of-service cost-sharing" means amounts paid to health carriers directly providing services, health care providers, or health care facilities by enrollees and may include copayments, coinsurance, or deductibles.
(13) "Grievance" means a written complaint submitted by or on behalf of a covered person regarding: (a) Denial of payment for medical services or nonprovision of medical services included in the covered person's health benefit plan, or (b) service delivery issues other than denial of payment for medical services or nonprovision of medical services, including dissatisfaction with medical care, waiting time for medical services, provider or staff attitude or demeanor, or dissatisfaction with service provided by the health carrier.
(14) "Health care facility" or "facility" means hospices licensed under chapter 70.127 RCW, hospitals licensed under chapter 70.41 RCW, rural health care facilities as defined in RCW 70.175.020, psychiatric hospitals licensed under chapter 71.12 RCW, nursing homes licensed under chapter 18.51 RCW, community mental health centers licensed under chapter 71.05 or 71.24 RCW, kidney disease treatment centers licensed under chapter 70.41 RCW, ambulatory diagnostic, treatment, or surgical facilities licensed under chapter 70.41 RCW, drug and alcohol treatment facilities licensed under chapter 70.96A RCW, and home health agencies licensed under chapter 70.127 RCW, and includes such facilities if owned and operated by a political subdivision or instrumentality of the state and such other facilities as required by federal law and implementing regulations.
(15) "Health care provider" or "provider" means:
(a) A person regulated under Title 18 or chapter 70.127 RCW, to practice health or health-related services or otherwise practicing health care services in this state consistent with state law; or
(b) An employee or agent of a person described in (a) of this subsection, acting in the course and scope of his or her employment.
(16) "Health care service" means that service offered or provided by health care facilities and health care providers relating to the prevention, cure, or treatment of illness, injury, or disease.
(17) "Health carrier" or "carrier" means a disability insurer regulated under chapter 48.20 or 48.21 RCW, a health care service contractor as defined in RCW 48.44.010, or a health maintenance organization as defined in RCW 48.46.020.
(18) "Health plan" or "health benefit plan" means any policy, contract, or agreement offered by a health carrier to provide, arrange, reimburse, or pay for health care services except the following:
(a) Long-term care insurance governed by chapter 48.84 RCW;
(b) Medicare supplemental health insurance governed by chapter 48.66 RCW;
(c) Limited health care services offered by limited health care service contractors in accordance with RCW 48.44.035;
(d) Disability income;
(e) Coverage incidental to a property/casualty liability insurance policy such as automobile personal injury protection coverage and homeowner guest medical;
(f) Workers' compensation coverage;
(g) Accident only coverage;
(h) Specified disease and hospital confinement indemnity when marketed solely as a supplement to a health plan;
(i) Employer-sponsored self-funded health plans;
(j) Dental only and vision only coverage; and
(k) Plans deemed by the insurance commissioner to have a short-term limited purpose or duration, or to be a student-only plan that is guaranteed renewable while the covered person is enrolled as a regular full-time undergraduate or graduate student at an accredited higher education institution, after a written request for such classification by the carrier and subsequent written approval by the insurance commissioner.
(19) "Material modification" means a change in the actuarial value of the health plan as modified of more than five percent but less than fifteen percent.
(20) "Preexisting condition" means any medical condition, illness, or injury that existed any time prior to the effective date of coverage.
(21) "Premium" means all sums charged, received, or deposited by a health carrier as consideration for a health plan or the continuance of a health plan. Any assessment or any "membership," "policy," "contract," "service," or similar fee or charge made by a health carrier in consideration for a health plan is deemed part of the premium. "Premium" shall not include amounts paid as enrollee point-of-service cost-sharing.
(22) "Review organization" means a disability insurer regulated under chapter 48.20 or 48.21 RCW, health care service contractor as defined in RCW 48.44.010, or health maintenance organization as defined in RCW 48.46.020, and entities affiliated with, under contract with, or acting on behalf of a health carrier to perform a utilization review.
employer" or "small group" means any person, firm, corporation,
partnership, association, political subdivision ((
except school districts)),
or self-employed individual that is actively engaged in business that, on at
least fifty percent of its working days during the preceding calendar quarter,
employed no more than fifty eligible employees, with a normal work week of
thirty or more hours, the majority of whom were employed within this state, and
is not formed primarily for purposes of buying health insurance and in which a
bona fide employer-employee relationship exists. In determining the number of
eligible employees, companies that are affiliated companies, or that are
eligible to file a combined tax return for purposes of taxation by this state,
shall be considered an employer. Subsequent to the issuance of a health plan
to a small employer and for the purpose of determining eligibility, the size of
a small employer shall be determined annually. Except as otherwise
specifically provided, a small employer shall continue to be considered a small
employer until the plan anniversary following the date the small employer no
longer meets the requirements of this definition. The term "small
employer" includes a self-employed individual or sole proprietor. The
term "small employer" also includes a self-employed individual or
sole proprietor who derives at least seventy-five percent of his or her income
from a trade or business through which the individual or sole proprietor has
attempted to earn taxable income and for which he or she has filed the
appropriate internal revenue service form 1040, schedule C or F, for the
previous taxable year.
(24) "Utilization review" means the prospective, concurrent, or retrospective assessment of the necessity and appropriateness of the allocation of health care resources and services of a provider or facility, given or proposed to be given to an enrollee or group of enrollees.
(25) "Wellness activity" means an explicit program of an activity consistent with department of health guidelines, such as, smoking cessation, injury and accident prevention, reduction of alcohol misuse, appropriate weight reduction, exercise, automobile and motorcycle safety, blood cholesterol reduction, and nutrition education for the purpose of improving enrollee health status and reducing health service costs.
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