COLUMBUS – State Representatives Jon Cross (R-Kenton) and Brian Lampton (R-Beavercreek) today introduced House Bill 188, legislation that would protect organ donors against discrimination from insurance coverage.
The legislation specifically prohibits an insurer offering life insurance, disability insurance or long-term care insurance from discriminating against a living organ donor in the offering, issuance, price or conditions of a policy of insurance based solely, and without any additional actuarial risks, on that person’s status as a living organ donor.
“Organ donors are a life-saving component of our healthcare system,” said Cross. “They also provide fiscal savings to many patients throughout Ohio by lowering healthcare costs.”
Under current law, living organ donors can experience higher premiums or denial of insurance coverage based solely on their status as an organ donor. Lack of insurance protection and higher premiums are barriers for those wanting to donate live-saving organs. House Bill 188 would ensure that insurance companies will be prohibited from denying or limiting life insurance, disability insurance or long-term care insurance living donors. The proposed legislation has no fiscal impact on Ohio.
“Living organ donors can unfairly face higher premiums or denial of insurance coverage in Ohio due to their selfless act of giving life. While this was not the intention of the insurance industry or policymakers, it is allowed under current law nonetheless,” said Lampton. “I am happy to work with Representative Cross on this issue to ensure Ohioans who choose to give life, are not denied access to insurance coverage in our state.”
Identical legislation was introduced in the 133rd General Assembly as House Bill 41. Then, it received support from the National Kidney Foundation, UC Health, Ohio American Academy of Pediatrics and several others. The bill did not receive any opposition in the committee process.
House Bill 188 now awaits a committee assignment.