Sacramento, CA — Bonnie Burns, Training and Policy Specialist with California Health Advocates, begins her 23rd term as one of the 20 appointed and funded consumer liaison representatives by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). Ms. Burns has served with the NAIC protecting consumer rights and reforming policy at the state and federal levels since the consumer liaison representative program began over two decades ago in 1992.
“We are ever proud of Ms. Burns and her many contributions to consumers state and nationwide,” said Elaine Wong Eakin, Executive Director of California Health Advocates. “Ms. Burns spearheaded the standardization of Medicare supplemental insurance, known as Medigap. Before standardization, consumers had no reliable way of comparing policies and were often unknowingly sold policies with duplicate benefits. Ms. Burns has also provided numerous Congressional testimonies guiding the standardization of long-term care insurance and the policies for financing long-term care.”
Ms. Burns efforts over the last 20 plus years have resulted in concrete, cumulative improvements in consumer rights and protections. Much of her work has been incorporated into NAIC Model Laws and Regulations, which serve as a guide for and are often adopted by states. Standards contained in these adopted laws often give consumers protections or rights they might not otherwise have had.
Ms. Burns advocacy efforts have directly resulted in added protections under California state law, such as adopting additional Medigap guaranteed issue rights and consumer protections in long term care insurance.
“Ms. Burns is an inspiration to us all. Her dedication and commitment to helping others has and continues to make a huge difference in the lives of millions of beneficiaries nationwide,” said Micki Nozaki, Senior Medicare Patrol Project Director with California Health Advocates.
In 2015, Ms. Burns will continue to represent consumer interests associated with health-related insurance products for Medicare beneficiaries. For more information, read Burns’ biography:https://www.cahealthadvocates.org/about-us/our-team/.
California Health Advocates is an independent non-profit organization that provides quality Medicare and related health care coverage information, education and policy advocacy. CHA presents accurate and up-to-date Medicare information for Medicare beneficiaries and their families as well as the professionals, advocates and providers who serve them, especially the 24 local HICAPs, which offer Medicare benefits counseling and community education. For more information, visit its website atcahealthadvocates.org.
Elaine Wong Eakin
Executive Director, California Health Advocates (CHA)