Who we are and what we do

The New York State Association of Health Underwriters is a part of the National Association of Health Underwriters (NAHU), which represents more than 100,000 licensed health insurance agents, brokers, consultants, and benefit professionals through more than 200 chapters across America.  

In New York State, over 650 association members service the health insurance needs of large and small employers of all types, as well as people seeking individual health insurance coverage.  We are the only association working solely on behalf of health insurance agents, brokers and benefit professionals.  We are your professional association and we provide legislative advocacy, education and professional development opportunities to our members, as well information resources, member recognition and member-only benefits. 

While most NAHU chapters across the country have increased membership dues over the last several years, New York State has held memberships fees at $395 and we are putting your membership dues to good use, which is our top priority.   

Here are some of the additional perks our members receive:

• Monthly membership meetings with guest speakers on topics that affect your career

•Annual Day on the Hill – Albany, NY – to meet with legislators and regulators and share the views of our association members

•Industry Publications, including the Health Insurance Underwriter's Magazine

•RHU/REBC classes and designations

•Eligibility for Leading Producer Round Table Award

•Online networking

•Career Center

•Annual Golf Outing

•Quarterly membership gatherings

 

LEGISLATIVE ADVOCACY

With passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010, for the first time individual states could create new insurance marketplaces for individuals and businesses in state or state/federal based exchanges.   NYSAHU worked with the Governor’s office and the New York State Department of Financial Services to appoint members of our association to the five regional advisory committees tasked with the design of the New York State of Health.  Our association members provided valuable insight which helped create one of the most successful state based exchanges.    Our association also fought for our member’s ability to be compensated on and off the exchange.

NYSAHU/NAHU’s legislative efforts strive to educate officials on both the state and federal levels about the healthcare system and the vital role of the health insurance agent as a consumer resource and advocate. Through a network of key legislative contacts, we cultivate relationships that allow our members to clarify issues and our positions before bills are written and votes are taken.

In 2016, these were some of our initiatives:

(1) Support PACE Act Conformity bill to return the Definition of "Small Group" to 1-50 lives

(2) Support establishment of Producer Commissions as integral part of carrier Premium Rate Filings that are submitted for prior approval to DFS

(3) Support Producer Compensation payments from State windfall financial services settlement funds

(4) Support the Modernization of the Anti-Rebating Statutes to allow licensed health insurance producers to expand the services they can provide to policyholders without being fined or subject to disciplinary action

(5) Support Prompt Payment of producer compensation

(6) Support the right for midsized (51-100) employer groups to continue to Self-Fund and obtain Stop-Loss Catastrophic Coverage on and after January 1, 2016

(7) Support Actuarial Justification by DFS of Prior Approval of Rates for individual and small group health insurance policies

(8) Support creation of a State Insurance Advisory Board comprised of representatives of domestic and foreign insurance companies, insurance producers and consumers

(9) Support a Cost/Benefit Analysis of all Mandated Benefits bills by the NYS Health Care Quality and Cost Containment Commission and its impact on healthcare access and affordability

(10) Oppose creation of a Health Insurance Guaranty Fund financed by assessments upon health plans and insurance carriers

(11) Oppose a government-run, "Single Payer Plan," such as that proposed in The New York Health Plan promising "Medicare for all,"

(12) Oppose Mandated Benefits bills:  S.1708-C (Bonacic) Senate Insurance Committee / A.1178-C (Gunther) Passed Assembly – requires mandatory health insurance coverage for prosthetic devices.S.2065-A (Young) Senate Insurance Committee / A.6376-A (Bronson) Passed Assembly – requires coverage for outpatient treatment by mental health practitioners. S.2530 (Golden) Senate Insurance Committee / A.6194 (Joyner) Passed Assembly – requires drug coverage at “any willing pharmacy” S.6429 (Seward) / A.9223 (Simotas) C.11, L.2016 – designates pregnancy as a “qualifying life event” for purposes of open enrollment in any NY State of Health plan or insurance policy.  S.6392-A (Little) / A.9198 (Lavine) C.23, L.2016 – requires reimbursement for first surgical first assistant services. S.7881 (Krueger) Senate Rules Committee / A.10066 (Richardson) Passed Assembly – requires coverage for maternal depression screenings.  S.8093 (Flanagan) / A.10679 (Barrett) (Governor’s Program Bill) C.74, L.2016 – requires coverage for the detection of breast cancer, including extended hours for certified mammography facilities and excused leave for breast cancer screenings. S.8139 (Murphy) / A.10727 (Rosenthal) (Governor’s Program Bill) C.71, L.2016 – requires insurance companies to: (i) provide insurance coverage, without prior authorization, for inpatient services for the diagnosis and treatment of a substance use disorder as long as needed; and (ii) only conduct a utilization review, including retrospective review, commencing on or after the fifteenth day. Patients would also be held harmless for any costs, other than copayments or coinsurances, for the provision of these services.

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Certification programs, professional designation courses, online resources  and conferences, including NAHU’s popular PPACA certification course,  are just a few ways NAHU helps members develop professionally as well as personally.

NETWORKING

Our monthly chapters membership meetings present an opportunity to interact with other insurance professionals may be the most beneficial aspect of NYSAHU membership. Being able to reach out to other professionals, asking questions, meeting sales representatives and learning about products are all invaluable opportunities that membership provides.  Some meetings are designated as continuing education courses.  Plan to annually attend NAHU’s Capitol Conference and Annual Convention to derive the tools and information needed to grow and manage your business in these changing times.  NAHU also offers online networking resources that connect members across the country.

The small monthly dues that you pay are worth it because no other organization fights as hard for you and your clients. NAHU continues to be a strong voice on Capitol Hill. NAHU has an “operation shout” that allows you and your clients direct access to members of congress to express our concerns over current legislation that they are voting on.

• NYSAHU protects our member’s right to help serve your clients.

Here are just a few facts about how your dues are spent by the association:

•NAHU spends over $1,000,000 annually to get our message across to Congress and other regulatory agencies.

•NAHU's Grassroots Network strives to provide federal and state legislators with information to ensure our voice is heard.

•HUPAC is the political action committee of NAHU.  HUPAC is registered with the FEC and allows for our contributions to be pooled together to ensure maximum impact.