1. A nonprofit corporation is established to be known as the Iowa small employer health reinsurance program.
2. A reinsuring carrier is subject to this program.
3. a. The program shall operate subject to the supervision and control of a board. Subject to the provisions of paragraph "b", the board shall consist of nine members appointed by the commissioner, and the commissioner or the commissioner's designee, who shall serve as an ex officio member and as chairperson of the board.
b. In appointing the members of the board, the commissioner shall include representatives of small employers and small employer carriers and such other individuals as determined to be qualified by the commissioner. At least five of the members of the board shall be representatives of carriers and shall be selected from individuals nominated by small employer carriers in this state pursuant to procedures and guidelines provided by rule of the commissioner.
c. The initial board members shall be appointed as follows:
(1) Three members shall be appointed for a term of two years.
(2) Three members shall be appointed for a term of four years.
(3) Three members shall be appointed for a term of six years.
d. Subsequent members shall be appointed for terms of three years. A board member's term shall continue until the member's successor is appointed.
e. A vacancy in the board shall be filled by the commissioner for the remainder of the term. A member of the board may be removed by the commissioner for cause.
4. The board, within one hundred eighty days after the initial appointments, shall submit a plan of operation to the commissioner. The commissioner, after notice and hearing, may approve the plan of operation if the commissioner determines that the plan is suitable to assure the fair, reasonable, and equitable administration of the program, and provides for the sharing of program gains and losses on an equitable and proportionate basis in accordance with the provisions of this section. The plan of operation is effective upon written approval of the commissioner. After the initial plan of operation is submitted and approved by the commissioner, the board may submit to the commissioner any amendments to the plan necessary or suitable to assure the fair, reasonable, and equitable administration of the program.
5. If the board fails to submit a plan of operation within one hundred eighty days after the board's appointment, the commissioner, after notice and hearing, shall establish and adopt a temporary plan of operation. The commissioner shall amend or rescind a plan adopted pursuant to this subsection at the time a plan is submitted by the board and approved by the commissioner.
6. The plan of operation shall do all of the following:
a. Establish procedures for the handling and accounting of program assets and moneys, and for an annual fiscal reporting to the commissioner.
b. Establish procedures for selecting an administering carrier and setting forth the powers and duties of the administering carrier.
c. Establish procedures for reinsuring risks in accordance with the provisions of this section.
d. Establish procedures for collecting assessments from reinsuring carriers to fund claims and administrative expenses incurred or estimated to be incurred by the program.
e. Establish a methodology for applying the dollar thresholds contained in this section for carriers that pay or reimburse health care providers through capitation or a salary.
f. Provide for any additional matters necessary to implement and administer the program.
7. The same general powers and authority granted under the laws of this state to insurance companies and health maintenance organizations licensed to transact business in this state may be exercised by the board under the program, except the power to issue health benefit plans directly to either groups or individuals. Additionally, the board is granted the specific authority to do all or any of the following:
a. Enter into contracts as necessary or proper to administer the provisions and purposes of this subchapter, including the authority, with the approval of the commissioner, to enter into contracts with similar programs in other states for the joint performance of common functions or with persons or other organizations for the performance of administrative functions.
b. Sue or be sued, including taking any legal action necessary or proper to recover any assessments and penalties for, on behalf of, or against the program or any reinsuring carriers.
c. Take any legal action necessary to avoid the payment of improper claims made against the program.
d. Define the health benefit plans for which reinsurance will be provided, and issue reinsurance policies, pursuant to this subchapter.
e. Establish rules, conditions, and procedures for reinsuring risks under the program.
f. Establish and implement actuarial functions as appropriate for the operation of the program.
g. Assess reinsuring carriers in accordance with the provisions of subsection 11, and make advance interim assessments as may be reasonable and necessary for organizational and interim operating expenses. Any interim assessments shall be credited as offsets against any regular assessments due following the close of the calendar year.
h. Appoint appropriate legal, actuarial, and other committees as necessary to provide technical assistance in the operation of the program, policy and other contract design, and any other function within the authority of the program.
i. Borrow money to effect the purposes of the program. Any notes or other evidence of indebtedness of the program not in default are legal investments for carriers and may be carried as admitted assets.
8. A reinsuring carrier may reinsure with the program as provided in this section.
a. With respect to a basic health benefit plan or a standard health benefit plan, the program shall reinsure the level of coverage provided and, with respect to other plans, the program shall reinsure up to the level of coverage provided in a basic or standard health benefit plan.
b. A small employer carrier may reinsure an entire employer group within sixty days of the commencement of the group's coverage under a health benefit plan.
c. A reinsuring carrier may reinsure an eligible employee or dependent within a period of sixty days following the commencement of the coverage with the small employer. A newly eligible employee or dependent of a reinsured small employer may be reinsured within sixty days of the commencement of such person's coverage.
d. (1) The program shall not reimburse a reinsuring carrier with respect to the claims of a reinsured employee or dependent until the small employer carrier has incurred an initial level of claims for such employee or dependent of five thousand dollars in a calendar year for benefits covered by the program. In addition, the reinsuring carrier is responsible for ten percent of the next fifty thousand dollars of incurred claims during a calendar year and the program shall reinsure the remainder. A reinsuring carrier's liability under this subparagraph shall not exceed a maximum limit of ten thousand dollars in any one calendar year with respect to any reinsured individual.
(2) The board annually shall adjust the initial level of claims and the maximum limit to be retained by the small employer carrier to reflect increases in costs and utilization within the standard market for health benefit plans within the state. The adjustment shall not be less than the annual change in the medical component of the "consumer price index for all urban consumers" of the United States department of labor, bureau of labor statistics, unless the board proposes and the commissioner approves a lower adjustment factor.
e. A small employer carrier may terminate reinsurance for one or more of the reinsured employees or dependents of a small employer on any plan anniversary date.
f. Premium rates charged for reinsurance by the program to a health maintenance organization that is federally qualified under 42 U.S.C. § 300c(c)(2)(A), and is thereby subject to requirements that limit the amount of risk that may be ceded to the program that are more restrictive than those specified in paragraph "d", shall be reduced to reflect that portion of the risk above the amount set forth in paragraph "d" that may not be ceded to the program, if any.
9. a. The board, as part of the plan of operation, shall establish a methodology for determining premium rates to be charged by the program for reinsuring small employers and individuals pursuant to this section. The methodology shall include a system for classification of small employers that reflects the types of case characteristics commonly used by small employer carriers in the state. The methodology shall provide for the development of base reinsurance premium rates, which shall be multiplied by the factors set forth in paragraph "b" to determine the premium rates for the program. The base reinsurance premium rates shall be established by the board, subject to the approval of the commissioner, and shall be set at levels which reasonably approximate gross premiums charged to small employers by small employer carriers for health benefit plans with benefits similar to the standard health benefit plan.
b. Premiums for the program shall be as follows:
(1) An entire small employer group may be reinsured for a rate that is one and one-half times the base reinsurance premium rate for the group established pursuant to this subsection.
(2) An eligible employee or dependent may be reinsured for a rate that is five times the base reinsurance premium rate for the individual established pursuant to this subsection.
c. The board periodically shall review the methodology established under paragraph "a", including the system of classification and any rating factors, to assure that it reasonably reflects the claims experience of the program. The board may propose changes to the methodology which shall be subject to the approval of the commissioner.
10. If a health benefit plan for a small employer is entirely or partially reinsured with the program, the premium charged to the small employer for any rating period for the coverage issued shall meet the requirements relating to premium rates set forth in section 513B.4.
11. a. Prior to March 1 of each year, the board shall determine and report to the commissioner the program net loss for the previous calendar year, including administrative expenses and incurred losses for the year, taking into account investment income and other appropriate gains and losses.
b. Any net loss for the year shall be recouped by assessments of reinsuring carriers.
(1) The board shall establish, as part of the plan of operation, a formula by which to make assessments against reinsuring carriers. The assessment formula shall be based on both of the following:
(a) Each reinsuring carrier's share of the total premiums earned in the preceding calendar year from health benefit plans delivered or issued for delivery to small employers in this state by reinsuring carriers.
(b) Each reinsuring carrier's share of the premiums earned in the preceding calendar year from newly issued health benefit plans delivered or issued for delivery during such calendar year to small employers in this state by reinsuring carriers.
(2) The formula established pursuant to subparagraph (1) shall not result in any reinsuring carrier having an assessment share that is less than fifty percent nor more than one hundred fifty percent of an amount which is based on the proportion of the reinsuring carrier's total premiums earned in the preceding calendar year from health benefit plans delivered or issued for delivery to small employers in this state by reinsuring carriers to total premiums earned in the preceding calendar year from health benefit plans delivered or issued for delivery to small employers in this state by all reinsuring carriers.
(3) The board, with approval of the commissioner, may change the assessment formula established pursuant to subparagraph (1) from time to time as appropriate. The board may provide for the shares of the assessment base attributable to premiums from all health benefit plans and to premiums from newly issued health benefit plans to vary during a transition period.
(4) Subject to the approval of the commissioner, the board shall make an adjustment to the assessment formula for reinsuring carriers that are approved health maintenance organizations which are federally qualified under 42 U.S.C. § 300 et seq., to the extent, if any, that restrictions are placed on them that are not imposed on other small employer carriers.
(5) Premiums and benefits paid by a reinsuring carrier that are less than an amount determined by the board to justify the cost of collection shall not be considered for purposes of determining assessments.
c. (1) Prior to March 1 of each year, the board shall determine and file with the commissioner an estimate of the assessments needed to fund the losses incurred by the program in the previous calendar year.
(2) If the board determines that the assessments needed to fund the losses incurred by the program in the previous calendar year will exceed the amount specified in subparagraph (3), the board shall evaluate the operation of the program and report its findings, including any recommendations for changes to the plan of operation, to the commissioner within ninety days following the end of the calendar year in which the losses were incurred. The evaluation shall include: an estimate of future assessments, the administrative costs of the program, the appropriateness of the premiums charged, and the level of insurer retention under the program and the costs of coverage for small employers. If the board fails to file the report with the commissioner within ninety days following the end of the applicable calendar year, the commissioner may evaluate the operations of the program and implement such amendments to the plan of operation the commissioner deems necessary to reduce future losses and assessments.
(3) For any calendar year, the amount specified in this subparagraph is five percent of total premiums earned in the previous year from health benefit plans delivered or issued for delivery to small employers in this state by reinsuring carriers.
(4) If assessments in each of two consecutive calendar years exceed by ten percent the amount specified in subparagraph (3), the commissioner may relieve carriers from any or all of the regulations of this subchapter or take such other actions as the commissioner deems equitable and necessary to spread the risk of loss and assure portability of coverages and continuity of benefits so as to reduce assessments to ten percent or less of that amount specified in subparagraph (3).
d. If assessments exceed net losses of the program, the excess shall be held in an interest-bearing account and used by the board to offset future losses or to reduce program premiums. As used in this paragraph, "future losses" includes reserves for incurred but not reported claims.
e. Each reinsuring carrier's proportion of the assessment shall be determined annually by the board based on annual statements and other reports deemed necessary by the board and filed by the reinsuring carriers with the board.
f. The plan of operation shall provide for the imposition of an interest penalty for late payment of assessments.
g. A reinsuring carrier may seek from the commissioner a deferment from all or part of an assessment imposed by the board. The commissioner may defer all or part of the assessment of a reinsuring carrier if the commissioner determines that the payment of the assessment would place the reinsuring carrier in a financially impaired condition. If all or part of an assessment against a reinsuring carrier is deferred, the amount deferred shall be assessed against the other participating carriers in a manner consistent with the basis for assessment set forth in this subsection. The reinsuring carrier receiving such deferment shall remain liable to the program for the amount deferred and shall be prohibited from reinsuring any individuals or groups in the program until such time as it pays such assessments.
12. The participation in the program as reinsuring carriers, the establishment of rates, forms, or procedures, or any other joint or collective action required by this subchapter shall not be the basis of any legal action, criminal or civil liability, or penalty against the program or any of its reinsuring carriers either jointly or separately.
13. The board, as part of the plan of operation, shall develop standards setting forth the manner and levels of compensation to be paid to producers for the sale of basic and standard health benefit plans. In establishing such standards, the board shall take into consideration all of the following:
a. The need to assure the broad availability of coverages.
b. The objectives of the program.
c. The time and effort expended in placing the coverage.
d. The need to provide ongoing service to the small employer.
e. The levels of compensation currently used in the industry.
f. The overall costs of coverage to small employers selecting these plans.
14. The program is exempt from any and all state or local taxes.
92 Acts, ch 1167, § 14; 93 Acts, ch 80, § 11, 12
Referred to in § 513B.4, 513B.11, 513B.12, 513B.17
© 1997 Cornell College and League of Women Voters of Iowa
Last update: Mon Jan 27 16:05:08 CST 1997