Rockefeller Urges Insurance Commissioners to Preserve the Strong Consumer Protections in the Health Care Reform Law

Says Health Care Law Rebates Belong to American Consumers and Businesses, not the Health Insurance Industry

March 15, 2011

Chairman RockefellerWASHINGTON, D.C.—Senator John D. (Jay) Rockefeller IV, Chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, sent a letter today to the President of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) urging state insurance regulators to oppose giving health insurance agents and brokers a special exemption from an important pro-consumer provision of the health care reform law. The letter provides a detailed analysis of why exempting agent and broker commissions from the law’s “minimum medical loss ratio” requirements could cost individuals and businesses more than a billion dollars in lost rebates and premiums reductions. The National Association of Health Underwriters (NAHU) and Florida Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty are lobbying NAIC members to endorse this special agent and broker exemption at the NAIC’s upcoming meeting in Austin, Texas. 

“Agents and brokers play a role in helping American consumers and businesses purchase health insurance,” Rockefeller said. “But I won’t support a proposal that allows those same agents, brokers, and health insurance companies to pocket $1 billion in benefits that should instead be going to the benefit of American consumers as part of the health care reform law we approved last year.”