Public Laws

124th Legislature

First Regular Session


Parts: A B C D E F G H I J

Chapter 244

H.P. 821 - L.D. 1180

PART D

Sec. D-1. 24-A MRSA 2159-C, sub-1, D is enacted to read:

D. "Carrier" means an insurer, nonprofit hospital and medical service organization or health maintenance organization.

Sec. D-2. 24-A MRSA 2159-C, sub-2, as enacted by PL 1997, c. 677, 2, is repealed and the following enacted in its place:

2. Discrimination in health, hospital and dental insurance. A carrier that issues individual or group hospital, health or dental insurance is subject to the requirements of this subsection. This subsection does not apply to accidental injury, specified disease, hospital indemnity, disability, long-term care and other limited benefit health insurance policies and contracts.
A. A carrier may not discriminate against an individual or eligible dependent on the basis of genetic information or the refusal to submit to a genetic test or make available the results of a genetic test or on the basis that the individual or eligible dependent received a genetic test or genetic counseling in the issuance, withholding, extension or renewal of any hospital confinement or other health insurance, as defined by the superintendent, by rule, or in the fixing of the rates, terms or conditions for insurance, or in the issuance or acceptance of any application for insurance.
B. Except as provided in this paragraph, a carrier may not request or require an individual to undergo a genetic test.

(1) Nothing in this subsection limits the authority of a health care professional who is providing health care services to an individual to request that that individual undergo a genetic test.

(2) A carrier may request, but not require, that an individual undergo a genetic test if the conditions described in this subparagraph are met:

(a) The request is made pursuant to research that complies with 45 Code of Federal Regulations, Part 46 or equivalent federal regulations and any applicable state or local laws, rules or regulations for the protection of human subjects in research;

(b) The carrier clearly indicates to the individual to whom the request is made, or in the case of a minor child to the legal guardian of the individual, that compliance with the request is voluntary and noncompliance will have no effect on enrollment status or premium or contribution amounts;

(c) Genetic information collected or acquired under this subparagraph is not used for purposes of determining eligibility for benefits, computing premium or contribution amounts, applying any preexisting condition exclusion or any other activities related to the creation, renewal or replacement of a health insurance contract; and

(d) The carrier complies with all applicable federal laws and regulations.

C. A carrier may not request, require or purchase genetic information for purposes of determining eligibility for benefits, computing premium or contribution amounts, applying any preexisting condition exclusion or any other activities related to the creation, renewal or replacement of a health insurance contract.
D. A carrier may not request, require or purchase genetic information with respect to an individual prior to the individual's enrollment under the plan or coverage in connection with the enrollment.
E. If a carrier obtains genetic information incidental to the requesting, requiring or purchasing of other information concerning an individual, the request, requirement or purchase is not considered a violation of paragraph D if the request, requirement or purchase is not in violation of paragraph C.
F. A reference in this subsection to genetic information concerning an individual includes:

(1) With respect to an individual who is a pregnant woman, genetic information of any fetus carried by that individual; and

(2) With respect to an individual using an assisted reproductive technology, genetic information of any embryo legally held by the individual.

Office of the Revisor of Statutes
State House, Room 108
Augusta, ME 04333