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Stronger discipline for Illinois professionals

041014 js 1207SPRINGFIELD – Professionals in Illinois who break the rules of their licenses could face steeper penalties. The Illinois Senate approved a plan giving regulators more flexibility when disciplining severe breaches of professional conduct.

Senator Bill Haine (D-Alton) sponsored the plan following a court case where a doctor was only given a 6-month suspension after having sex with and giving alcohol and marijuana to a 20 year-old patient.

“This will lead to appropriate discipline for egregious actions. Professionals in Illinois are held to a high standard. If you break the rules and the public trust you should face the consequences,” Haine said.

In the court case, Kafin v. IDFPR, the court overturned an Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation attempt to strip the doctor’s license. The plan passed by the Senate strengthens the department’s ability to enforce its existing rules.

The department handles professional certification and licensing. It regulates jobs ranging from locksmiths to barbers and doctors to pawnshop managers.

The plan, Senate Bill 232, passed the Senate by a 57-0 vote on Thursday, and it now moves to the House for approval.

Haine introduces insurance fraud protection

050714CM0426SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Bill Haine (D-Alton) introduced a plan last week creating protections against a new type of health insurance fraud caused by the Affordable Care Act.

Under the ACA, a person who is not covered by a group insurance plan can apply for and receive health insurance from multiple companies. If that person then gets medical treatment, the hospital bills all of the insurers and each company is required to cover the cost of the treatment. The hospital – having received too much money for the treatment – then gives the extra money to the individual.

The plan allows health insurance companies that all cover the same person to coordinate with each other on how medical expenses are handled.

“People could abuse the system because of changes from the Affordable Care Act. We are preventing fraud and reducing the costly waste associated with this type of abuse,” Haine said.

The proposal is supported by the Illinois Chamber of Commerce, the Illinois Department of Insurance, Blue Cross Blue Shield and several other insurance providers.

"It's imperative that we continue to keep healthcare costs low for the business community and consumers. This bill prevents an unnecessary increase in costs as a result of a fraud on the system," said Jennifer Hammer, executive director of the Illinois Chamber of Commerce Healthcare Council.

The plan is contained in an amendment to House Bill 3784. The Senate’s Insurance Committee will hear the amendment during a meeting on Wednesday.

For additional information from the Chamber of Commerce:
     Jennifer Hammer 217-522-5512
     This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
     Associate Vice President and Legal Counsel, Government Affairs
     Executive Director, Healthcare Council
     Illinois Chamber of Commerce

Sen. William R. Haine

haine 150

Assistant Majority Leader
56th District

Years served:
2002 - 2018

Committee assignments: Criminal Law; Insurance (Vice-Chairperson); Judiciary; Licensed Activities and Pensions; Veterans Affairs.

Biography: Born 8 August 1944, in Alton, Illinois. United States Army Veteran; one tour of duty, Vietnam (1967-69); Bachelors Degree, St. Louis University (1967); Juris Doctorate, St. Louis University School of Law (1974). Member, Madison County Board (1978, 1982-86); Metro-East Transit District Board of Trustees (1981-88); Madison County State's Attorney (1988-2002). Wife, Anna, 7 children, 31 grandchildren.