SACRAMENTO - Local Assemblyman Hector De La Torre, who represents south Downey in the state Assembly, has been endorsed by the California Medical Association in the race for state insurance commissioner.In his five years in the state Assembly, De La Torre has supported "expanding access to health care, ensuring patients get the coverage they deserve and holding insurers accountable," the California Medical Association said in a press release announcing the endorsement. "Hector De La Torre has fought hard for patients and courageously taken on insurance companies to demand transparency and accountability," said Brennan Cassidy, M.D., president of CMA. "California's physicians are proud to endorse Hector De La Torre for insurance commissioner because we know he will do an outstanding job." In 2007, De La Torre authored AB 1342, which prohibits insurers from refusing to pay for a medical treatment after it has been authorized and provided. The legislation was signed into law and took effect in 2008. In 2008 and 2009, De La Torre authored measures sponsored by CMA to tackle the growing problem of insurance companies canceling coverage for patients after they become sick and medical bills begin to mount. A congressional investigation last year found that three insurers used rescissions to cancel more than 20,000 policies over five years, saving the companies $300 million in claims. AB 1945 and AB 2 both sought to create an independent board to review decisions made by health insurers and health plans to cancel coverage for patients after they get sick. The legislation also would have forced insurers to continue providing coverage until receiving a ruling from the board. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed both bills.
********** Published: February 12, 2010 - Volume 8 - Issue 43