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PENNSYLVANIA LEGISLATIVE BUDGET AND FINANCE COMMITTEE CONCLUDES NEW AUTO LAW IS SAVING MOTORISTS MONEY

 HARRISBURG, Pa., March 3 /PRNewswire/ -- Insurance Commissioner Cynthia M. Maleski welcomed today a report by the independent state Legislative Budget and Finance Committee which, she said, confirms the savings motorists achieved under the state's new auto insurance law.
 The committee was required by the auto insurance reform law, Act 6 of 1990, to assess the impact of the medical cost containment provisions of the new law.
 "This study confirms what Gov. Casey reported to the people in January," Maleski said. "The new auto insurance law has saved people money and has restrained the spiralling rates people were paying before the law passed."
 According to Insurance Department analysis of industry data, the new law saved consumers $1.4 billion on auto insurance between July 1990 and December 1991 -- and $791 million of those savings was generated by the medical cost containment portion of the new law.
 The committee also reported that the Insurance Department has been aggressive in monitoring and regulating the medical cost containment provisions of the new auto insurance law and should continue its efforts.
 The report concluded that the new law has not affected the availability of medical care for injured victims of auto accidents as medical providers initially predicted when the law was passed in 1990. In addition, it found that the medical cost containment provisions of Act 6 have not seriously affected the financial viability of medical providers in the Commonwealth.
 The report referred to unsubstantiated suggestions by some members of the medical community that they were shifting uncompensated charges to other payors as a result of the new law. However, the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee itself noted that those charges were not documented.
 "There is no empirical evidence which exist which would demonstrate any validity to averments by providers that they are shifting uncompensated charges to other payors," Maleski wrote in her response to the report.
 /delval/
 -0- 3/3/93
 /CONTACT: Amy Dugan or Leslie Osborn of the Pennsylvania Department of Insurance, 717-787-3289/


CO: Pennsylvania Department of Insurance ST: Pennsylvania IN: SU:

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Date:Mar 3, 1993
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