Sen. Don Samuelson, DFL-Brainerd, hopes the second time is a charm for the Fairness in Health Care Act, a bill he successfully guided through the Senate last year only to be stymied in the House.
At a mid-day news conference in St. Paul scheduled for today, Samuelson, the Senate president; Rep. Ron Abrams, R-Minnetonka; and Attorney General Mike Hatch intended to express bipartisan support for the measure. In a news release, they said the bill would protect the rights of patients, create standards of accountability and disclosure for health carriers regarding treatment decisions, prohibit health carriers from denying court-ordered treatment and call for industry-wide definition for "medically necessary treatment."
"Last year, my colleagues in the Senate stood up for patients and showed great courage by passing this bill," Samuelson said in a statement released shortly before the news conference. "I hope that this year the Senate can once again be on the side of fairness, pass this bill, and then work in a bipartisan effort with House leaders like Ron Abrams to make sure the Fairness in Health Care Act becomes law."
Abrams said health care can no longer be measured by financial concerns of what is best for the bottom line, but rather what is in the best interest of the patient.
Hatch said the bill will restore balance in the relationship between patients, doctors and health carriers.
"When people purchase health care insurance they do so for the promise that if they get sick, they will be able to have medical treatment that is necessary and appropriate," Hatch said.
Brainerd Dispatch ©2013. All Rights Reserved.