(1) All health care benefits provided to persons employed by public employers as defined by this section shall be provided by health care plans that contain best practices established by the former school employees health care board or the department of administrative services. All policies or contracts for health care benefits that are issued or renewed after the expiration of any applicable collective bargaining agreement must contain all best practices established pursuant to this section at the time of renewal. Health care plans that contain the best practices may be self-insured.
(2) Upon consulting with the department of administrative services, a political subdivision may adopt a delivery system of benefits that is not in accordance with the department's adopted best practices if it is considered by the department to be most financially advantageous to the political subdivision.
(3) As used in this section:
(a) "Public employer" means political subdivisions, public school districts, or state institutions of higher education.
(b) "Public school district" means a city, local, exempted village, or joint vocational school district; a STEM school established under Chapter 3326. of the Revised Code; or an educational service center. "Public school district" does not mean a community school established under Chapter 3314. of the Revised Code.
(c) "State institution of higher education" or "state institution" means a state institution of higher education as defined in section 3345.011 of the Revised Code.
(d) "Political subdivision" has the same meaning as defined in section 9.833 of the Revised Code.
(e) A "health care plan" includes group policies, contracts, and agreements that provide hospital, surgical, or medical expense coverage, including self-insured plans. A "health care plan" does not include an individual plan offered to the employees of a political subdivision, public school district, or state institution, or a plan that provides coverage only for specific disease or accidents, or a hospital indemnity, medicare supplement, or other plan that provides only supplemental benefits, paid for by the employees of a political subdivision, public school district, or state institution.
(f) A "health plan sponsor" means a political subdivision, public school district, a state institution of higher education, a consortium of political subdivisions, public school districts, or state institutions, or a council of governments.
(4) The public employees health care fund is hereby created in the state treasury. The department shall use all funds in the public employees health care fund solely to carry out the provisions of this section and related administrative costs.
(B) The department of administrative services shall do all of the following:
(1) Identify strategies to manage health care costs;
(2) Study the potential benefits of state or regional consortiums of public employers' health care plans;
(3) Publish information regarding the health care plans offered by political subdivisions, public school districts, state institutions, and existing consortiums;
(4) Assist in the design of health care plans for political subdivisions, public school districts, and state institutions of higher education in accordance with division (A) of this section separate from the plans for state agencies;
(5) Adopt and release a set of standards that shall be considered the best practices for health care plans offered to employees of political subdivisions, public school districts, and state institutions;
(6) Require that plans the health plan sponsors administer make readily available to the public all cost and design elements of the plan;
(7) Promote cooperation among all organizations affected by this section in identifying the elements for successful implementation of this section;
(8) Promote cost containment measures aligned with patient, plan, and provider management strategies in developing and managing health care plans; and
(9) Prepare and disseminate to the public an annual report on the status of health plan sponsors' effectiveness in complying with best practices and making progress to reduce the rate of increase in insurance premiums and employee out-of-pocket expenses, as well as progress in improving the health status of employees and their families.
(C) The director of administrative services may convene a public health care advisory committee . The committee shall make recommendations to the director of administrative services or the director's designee on the development and adoption of best practices under this section. The committee shall consist of fifteen members: five members appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives ; five members appointed by the president of the senate ; and five members appointed by the governor and shall include representatives from state and local government employers, state and local government employees, insurance agents, health insurance companies, and joint purchasing arrangements currently in existence. Members shall serve without compensation.
(D) The department may adopt rules for the enforcement of health plan sponsors' compliance with the best practices standards adopted by the department pursuant to this section.
(E) Any health care plan providing coverage for the employees of political subdivisions, public school districts, or state institutions of higher education, or that have provided coverage within two years before the effective date of this amendment, shall provide nonidentifiable aggregate claims and administrative data for the coverage provided as required by the department, without charge, within thirty days after receiving a written request from the department. The claims data shall include data relating to employee group benefit sets, demographics, and claims experience.
(F) The department may work with other state agencies to obtain services as the department deems necessary for the implementation and operation of this section, based on demonstrated experience and expertise in administration, management, data handling, actuarial studies, quality assurance, or for other needed services.
(G) The department shall hire staff as necessary to provide administrative support to the department and the public employee health care plan program established by this section.
(H) Nothing in this section shall be construed as prohibiting political subdivisions, public school districts, or state institutions from consulting with and compensating insurance agents and brokers for professional services or from establishing a self-insurance program.
(I) Pursuant to Chapter 117. of the Revised Code, the auditor of state shall conduct all necessary and required audits of the department. The auditor of state, upon request, also shall furnish to the department copies of audits of political subdivisions, public school districts, or consortia performed by the auditor of state.
Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 25, HB 59, §101.01, eff. 9/29/2013.
Amended by 129th General AssemblyFile No.28, HB 153, §101.01, eff. 6/30/2011.
Repealed by 129th General AssemblyFile No.39, SB 171, §2, eff. 6/30/2011.
Note: The amendment to this section by 129th General AssemblyFile No.10, SB 5, §1 was rejected by voters in the November, 2011 election.