South Carolina General Assembly
110th Session, 1993-1994

Bill 1399

Indicates Matter Stricken
Indicates New Matter

                    Current Status

Introducing Body:               Senate
Bill Number:                    1399
Primary Sponsor:                Mitchell
Committee Number:               13
Type of Legislation:            CR
Subject:                        Medical Care Savings Account
Residing Body:                  Senate
Current Committee:              Medical Affairs
Computer Document Number:       GJK/20874SD.94
Introduced Date:                19940503    
Last History Body:              Senate
Last History Date:              19940503    
Last History Type:              Introduced, referred to
Scope of Legislation:           Statewide
All Sponsors:                   Mitchell
Type of Legislation:            Concurrent


Bill  Body    Date          Action Description              CMN  Leg Involved
____  ______  ____________  ______________________________  ___  ____________

1399  Senate  19940503      Introduced, referred to         13

View additional legislative information at the LPITS web site.

(Text matches printed bills. Document has been reformatted to meet World Wide Web specifications.)



Whereas, thirty-seven million Americans are without health insurance and many more are under-insured because of the effects of rising health care costs. The costs of health care are escalating by as much as seventeen percent each year. This has forced employers to trim the level and availability of health care benefits to their employees; and

Whereas, polling of citizens shows that a substantial majority feel that affordable health care is the number one economic issue facing them; and

Whereas, over-utilization of medical services for relatively small claims is one of the most significant causes of health care cost increases. More than two-thirds of all insurance claims for medical spending are less than three thousand dollars each year for families in this country; and

Whereas, the concept of medical savings accounts has developed in response to the runaway cost increases of health care in this country. This initiative is designed to bring market forces to bear on health care and its financing. It is predicated on providing incentives to eliminate unnecessary medical treatment and encourage competition in seeking health care; and

Whereas, through employer-funded medical care savings and reduced cost catastrophic insurance policies, millions of Americans could insure themselves for both routine and major medical services. Under the concept of medical care savings accounts, an employer making annual premium payments of four thousand five hundred dollars per employee each year, the national average, would invest three thousand into a medical care bank account for each employee. From this amount, the employee would pay the first three thousand dollars of medical expenses. The remaining one thousand five hundred dollars of the employer's contribution would go toward the purchase of a group policy to cover catastrophic medical costs up to a specified limit. Any of the three thousand dollars not used to pay incurred medical bills belongs to the employee. This would be a strong incentive for people not to abuse health expenditures, and this concept also makes it more feasible for low income workers to seek preventive care and early intervention which they might otherwise be forced to forego due to high deductibles in traditional policies; and

Whereas, by making medical care decisions the employee's prerogative, individuals have a strong stake in reducing costs. This simple financial mechanism also will expand health insurance options to others who presently have no insurance. Most importantly, this move to decrease health care cost burdens in this country would require no new federal bureaucracy and would be revenue neutral to employers. Now, therefore,

Be it resolved by the Senate, the House of Representatives concurring:

That the members of the General Assembly of South Carolina hereby memorialize the Congress of the United States to promptly enact legislation to enable Americans to establish medical care savings accounts.

Be it further resolved that copies of this resolution be forwarded to the President of the United States Senate, the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, and each member of the South Carolina Congressional Delegation.