Insider NJ

Concerns On Horizon Bill From 40 Public Interest Groups

Insider NJ — December 10, 2020

New Jersey Citizen Action is releasing [a] letter signed by 40 New Jersey public interest organizations today, about Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield's attempt to restructure. The letter lays out five key requirements that the Governor and Legislature must ensure happen in order to fully protect the public and health care consumer's interests in the restructuring.

Maura Collinsgru, NJCA's Health Care Program Director commented, "The legislation to permit HBCBS to restructure (A5119/S3218) will have a tremendous effect on New Jersey's health and health care market. Most importantly, as it stands, the proposed legislation does not protect the public's interest in HBCBS's assets and charitable mission. This bill was only introduced 4 days ago and the Legislature hopes to pass it fully by December 17th. A 10 day legislative process is not nearly enough time for members of the New Jersey public, consumer groups and rank and file legislators, to evaluate let alone provide meaningful input on the bill. Furthermore, much of the information needed to evaluate the proposal is not yet available, including proposed amendments.

The letter we are releasing today lays out five key requirements that should guide the review of this proposal. This includes information essential to evaluating the company's proposal, as well as ensuring the core principle our 40 groups hold: that the assets of the company cannot be separated from the mission under which they were accumulated, to improve the health of the people of New Jersey. We urge the Governor and Legislature to ensure these requirements are followed so that the process of evaluating the restructuring plan is thorough and the public and health care consumer's interests are protected."

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