On Aug.12, 2015, Gov. Brown signed HB 3530 into law, adding Chapter 832 to the Insurance Code. The law prohibits specified terms imposed on vision care providers by vision care insurance or a vision care discount card.
Specifically, contracts between vision care providers and an entity that offers vision care insurance or a vision care discount card may not:
Limit or specify the fee that a vision care provider may charge for vision care services or materials that are not reimbursed, in whole or in part, by the vision care insurance or discount card;
Require a vision care provider to participate in a particular vision care insurance plan or discount card program as a condition for participating in another insurance plan;
Change the terms, the contractual discount or the reimbursement rates under vision care insurance or a vision care discount card without a signed acknowledgment that the vision care provider agrees to the changes; or
Directly or indirectly restrict or limit a vision care provider’s choice of suppliers of materials
This new law also allows the use of a discount card by a patient of a vision care provider if:
The enrollment of the vision care provider is 1) completely voluntary, and 2) not conditioned upon the vision care provider’s participation in any other discount card program with different provider terms and conditions or in another insurance plan.
The discount card program does not reimburse the vision care provider for the cost of the vision care services that were discounted.
The law is effective Jan. 1, 2016.
HB 3530 »