Introduction | FAQ | Summary | Draft Legislation | Reasons to Support the Act | Platform

Summary Of The Connecticut Health Care Security Act

John R. Battista, M.D. and Justine A. McCabe, Ph.D.
Connecticut Coalition For Universal Health Care
December 18, 2000

This Act would insure payment for all medically necessary services, medications, and long term care for all residents of the State of Connecticut. Residents could choose any willing licensed health caregiver in Connecticut. Decisions about health care would be made by licensed health caregivers and their patients without pre-approval.

This health insurance program would be administered by a health care trust governed by a thirty seven member board of trustees composed of consumer advocates, health care givers, health care organizations, taxpayer representatives, health care experts and state officials, accountable to state government. Benefits and fees would be determined by this trust in collaboration with a consumer advisory council, a health care professional advisory council, and a health care organizations advisory council.

The Act lowers health care costs by mandating reductions in administrative costs, purchasing medications and durable medical equipment in bulk, determining fees for health caregivers, establishing global budgets for health care organizations, coordinating state wide medical services, consolidating existing state and federal health care programs, reviewing health care givers and organizations in terms of quality assurance standards, and encouraging preventive, primary health care practices. The Act mandates that any increase in the health care trust's budget be less than the percentage of increase in the national health care budget for the preceding year after a five year adjustment period.

Connecticut Tobacco Settlement Funds would be used to enroll residents and establish the infrastructure for this health insurance program. Year-to-year funding would be obtained from existing state and federal health care funds as well as employer health care payroll taxes, family health care income taxes, and excise taxes on activities detrimental to health to the extent these activities can be shown to contribute to Connecticut health care costs.

The Act mandates that the cost to the average large employer be equal to or less than current health care insurance expenses and that the payroll taxes of smaller employers be progressively decreased in accord with the number of their employees in order to insure affordability. Health care insurance premiums would be collected only from those families whose income is above 185% of the federal poverty level. Premiums for families are limited so that the average family would pay an amount less than the cost of private insurance for those services available under the Act but not available under their current insurance program in addition to an amount less than the cost of copayments or contributions their current insurance program may require for services covered by their current insurance program and the Act.

The Act mandates that the trust seek to transfer all direct health care services that the trust inherits from existing state health care programs into the private, not for profit, health care sector. The Act provides for up to one percent of revenues to be utilized during the first three years of the insurance program to retrain workers displaced by the Act.