Insurance bill debate heats up

Cheyenne, Wyo. – A bill that allows for an independent review when an insurance company denies a claim for a medical procedure is being discussed in the Wyoming Senate.

Senator Tony Ross says the bill will not allow insurance companies to just simply deny procedures that they decide are too costly, but at the same time he hopes it will also prevent unnecessary care from being required.

Senator Charlie Scott of Casper cited studies that contend that 60 percent of medical costs are not necessary.

"We have to be sure that we are not defining medical necessity in a way that will force insurers to pay for a whole lot of things that are not necessary."

But Scott was told that saving money was not the ultimate intent of the bill. Senator John Schiffer says, instead, the review will use unbiased experts to determine if a procedure is appropriate.

"If nothing more we will have responsible evidence-based medicine in the state of Wyoming." It is not a cost cutting measure. It says practice good medicine and other good things will follow."

Still some wondered if an independent review should happen, especially if the bill causes health care costs to rise.