SB 858 – California

Status: Enacted
Year Introduced: 2022
Link: https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=202120220SB858

Health care service plans: discipline: civil penalties.
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. Existing law authorizes the Director of the Department of Managed Health Care to take disciplinary measures, including the imposition of civil penalties, against a licensee when the director determines that the licensee has committed an act or omission constituting grounds for disciplinary action, as specified. Under existing law, a person who violates the act, or a rule or order adopted or issued under the act, is generally liable for a civil penalty not to exceed $2,500 per violation. Existing law also includes various provisions that assess specific civil and administrative penalties for certain violations. Fines and penalties under the act are deposited into the Managed Care Administrative Fines and Penalties Fund, and used, upon appropriation by the Legislature, for designated purposes.

This bill would increase the maximum base amount of the civil penalty from $2,500 per violation to $25,000 per violation, which would be adjusted annually commencing January 1, 2024, as specified. The bill would multiply the amounts of other specified civil and administrative penalties by 4, commencing January 1, 2023, and would also annually adjust those penalties, commencing January 1, 2024. The bill would authorize the director to impose a corrective action plan to require future compliance with the act, under certain circumstances. If a health care service plan fails to comply with the corrective action plan in a timely manner, the bill would require the department to monitor the health care service plan through medical surveys, financial examinations, or other means necessary to ensure timely compliance.

The bill would require the director, when assessing administrative penalties against a health care service plan, to determine the appropriate amount of the penalty for each violation, based upon consideration of specified factors, such as the nature, scope, and gravity of the violation, whether the violation is an isolated incident, and the amount of the penalty necessary to deter similar violations in the future. The bill would require the director to provide a written explanation of the amount of the penalty, including the factors the director relied upon in assessing that amount.

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Associated Litigation:

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