SB 854 – California

Status: Inactive / Dead
Year Introduced: 2020

Health care coverage: Substance use disorders. Existing law, the Knox-Keene Health Care Service Plan Act of 1975, provides for the licensure and regulation of health care service plans by the Department of Managed Health Care and makes a willful violation of the act a crime. Existing law provides for the regulation of health insurers by the Department of Insurance. Existing law requires specified health insurance policies that provide coverage for outpatient prescription drugs to cover medically necessary prescription drugs and subjects those policies to certain limitations on cost sharing and the placement of drugs on formularies. Existing law authorizes a health care service plan and a health insurer to utilize formularies, prior authorization, step therapy, or other reasonable medical management practices in the provision of outpatient prescription drug coverage. This bill would require health care service plan contracts and health insurance policies issued, amended, or renewed on or after January 1, 2021, that provide outpatient prescription drug benefits to cover all medically necessary prescription drugs approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for treating substance use disorders that are appropriate for the specific needs of an enrollee or insured. The bill would require those drugs to be placed on the lowest cost-sharing tier of the plan or insurer’s prescription drug formulary, unless specified criteria are met. The bill would, among other prohibitions, prohibit prior authorization or step therapy requirements on a prescription drug approved by the FDA for treating substance use disorders, unless specified criteria are met. Because a willful violation of these provisions by a health care service plan would be a crime, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.

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