BHEC: “A Win For Bermuda’s Health System”

December 14, 2017

The Bermuda Health Council said they are “elated at the passing of the Health Insurance Amendment Act 2017,” saying the “passing of this Act will now ensure that all dialysis treatments are covered by the Mutual Reinsurance Fund.”

“This will increase efficiencies in payment and reduce health costs by consolidating expenditure to the Mutual Reinsurance Fund rather than having both health insurance premiums and the Mutual Reinsurance Fund cover dialysis,” the Council said.

“Additionally, this Act also increased the licensing fees for health insurance companies. The revenue collected from licensing fees by the Health Council will bolster regulatory oversight and activities, specifically the transition into ICD-10 codes, expanded use of electronic data, as well as, ensuring that insurers are able to cover quality services, keeping on par with the rest of the world.

“Currently, we are behind the global standard by using ICD-9 codes to label and claim on health services. Transitioning to ICD-10 will allow the Health Council to increase standardisation of data so that all health stakeholders can more accurately understand the burden of disease and cause of illness.

“When we have a better understanding of how to reduce disease and illness, we can make suitable policy decisions to help keep Bermuda’s residents well.

“We are currently looking into establishing a health information exchange where practitioners can share electronic health records [EHR].

“The funds collected from the increase in licensing fees will support progress toward more transparent claims, more accurate information for healthcare consumers, streamlining of important health information, and better care coordination between health service providers.

“Lastly, we will also be providing additional guidance to insurers on innovative practices ensuring that there are benefits available to our public for new cost-effective, quality health services.”

Dr. Ricky Brathwaite, Director, Health Economics stated: “The passing of this legislation is a win for Bermuda’s health system. The increased funds will be put toward improving quality care, standards and transparency in Bermuda’s health system.

“The Health Council team looks forward adopting and incorporating up-to-date practices to ensure that we are continuing to receive quality care at a fair price.”

This Bill was one of several that passed in the Senate yesterday, other Bills that passed include the Bermuda National Parks Amendment Act 2017, the Bermuda National Parks Amendment [No. 2] Act 2017, the Land Title Registration Amendment Act 2017, the Residential Care Homes and Nursing Homes Amendment Act 2017, the Casino Gaming Amendment Bill 2017, the Domestic Partnership Act 2017, The Misuse of Drugs [Decriminalisation of Cannabis] Amendment Act 2017, and the Price Commission Amendment Act 2017.

The Health Insurance Amendment Bill 2017 follows below [PDF here]:

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