Ashton Marra Published

Tomblin Signs Bills for Insurance Transparency, Caregiver Assistance


Governor Earl Ray Tomblin was joined by lawmakers and patient advocacy groups from across the state at the Capitol Thursday for the ceremonial signing of two healthcare related bills.

Senate Bill 366 creates the Patient Protection and Transparency Act which offers protections to people who sign up for insurance through a federal health care exchange website.

Tomblin also signed House Bill 2100 known as the Caregiver Advise, Record and Enable Act.

Backed by the AARP, the CARE Act allows a patient to name a layperson as their caregiver when he or she enters the hospital. That caregiver then has access to patient health and discharge information, as well as training about how to care for the patient when they return home. 

“We believe it’s important because not only will the patient have a better outcome and recovery at home, but we could be actually saving money in Medicare and Medicaid by reducing costly hospital readmissions,” Gaylene Miller, state director of the West Virginia AARP, said of the bill Thursday

Miller estimated there are more than 300,000 family at home caregivers in the state which make up about $2.8 billion worth of uncompensated care.