State Sen. Denise Ricciardi, R-Bedford secured stakeholder approval for her bill to streamline the process for patients and providers needing prior authorization before a medical procedure (SB 561).

Senator Denise Ricciardi for NH Senate 9, representing Bedford, issues the following statement on her introduction of SB 561-FN, a legislative initiative aimed at streamlining the crucial issue of prior authorization for healthcare in New Hampshire.

“Collaborating with key stakeholders, including the NH Hospital Association and the Department of Insurance, this bill aims to streamline prior authorization processes and enhance transparency within the healthcare system.

SB 561-FN incorporates provisions designed to ensure timely decisions on medical treatments, improve transparency on insurer websites, codify a clear peer-to-peer process, and mandate carriers to report prior authorization metrics following Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) rules. This comprehensive bill directly addresses concerns raised by constituents, acknowledging the delays experienced by numerous Granite Staters in obtaining approval from their insurance companies for essential medical care.

My legislation not only breaks down barriers to patient care but also seeks to enhance efficiency, potentially lowering insurance premiums and overall care costs. While specific savings are pending study, similar CMS rule provisions are estimated to result in at least $16 billion in savings over 10 years nationally.

I express gratitude to stakeholders for their collaboration on a compromise amendment supported by both providers and carriers. I acknowledge the commitment of all parties involved to advocate in the best interests of patients, members, and constituents.

In addressing constituents’ concerns, the bill aims to reduce delays in obtaining approval from insurance companies for essential medical care by implementing a reasonable timeline for prior authorization determinations, in line with federal regulations.

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