Prior Authorization Reform Legislation Introduced at the Colorado Capitol

HB24-1149 Prior Authorization Requirements, Alternatives was introduced yesterday at the Colorado Capitol and aims to reform prior authorization and improve healthcare access.

The Colorado Academy of Family Physicians worked closely with partners, including the Colorado Medical Society, to develop this bill, sponsored by Representatives Shannon Bird and Lisa Frizell, and Senators Dylan Roberts and Barbara Kirkmeyer, along with 56 other legislators and endorsed by 24 organizations and counting ranging from patient advocacy organizations, health care providers, and chronic condition associations. Read the full press release below.

Colorado Legislature Introduces HB24-1149 Prior Authorization Requirements Alternatives to Reform Prior Authorization Requirements and Enhance Healthcare Access

[Denver, January 31, 2024] – The Colorado Academy of Family Physicians (CAFP) and our partners proudly announce the introduction of HB24-1149, groundbreaking legislation aimed at streamlining prior authorization in health insurance for services and removing unnecessary barriers to essential healthcare.

Sponsored by Representatives Shannon Bird (D) and Lisa Frizell (R), and Senators Dylan Roberts (D) and Barbara Kirkmeyer (R), the bill addresses critical issues in the prior authorization system, demonstrating a commitment to improving healthcare access and reducing costs. The proposed reforms in HB24-1149 aim to bring about positive changes for patients and their doctors.

Key features of the bill include:

  • Extended Approval Duration: HB24-1149 seeks to extend the duration of approval for prior authorizations (PAs), so that patients can get the treatments they need without unnecessary interruption..
  • Prohibition of Repeated PA Requirements: The legislation will prohibit insurers from imposing repeated prior authorization requirements for chronic maintenance medications, eliminating unnecessary bureaucratic hurdles for patients in need of ongoing care.
  • Enhanced Transparency: HB24-1149 emphasizes transparency in the prior authorization process so patients and their doctors know what’s covered and how they can access their benefits.
  • Creation of Alternatives: Recognizing the need for innovation, the bill encourages insurers to develop alternatives to prior authorizations for physicians, offering more flexibility and encouraging efficiency to get patients the healthcare they need.

Dr. Cleveland Piggott, President of the CAFP, stated, “prior authorizations delay recommended and necessary care to patients, and too many of us have either personally experienced or have loved ones who have received subpar care because of these unnecessary administrative hurdles and delays in treatment. As a physician, having my patients suffer needlessly because of an administrative hurdle is demoralizing, and I’m far from alone. Administrative burden is one of the leading causes of physician burnout. This legislation is a necessary and important step in the right direction to support our communities because health can’t wait.”   

The CAFP and its partners are calling on the Colorado legislature to support and pass HB24-1149, recognizing its potential to bring about positive changes for Coloradans’ access to care.

For media inquiries, please contact:
Emily Bishop
Director of Communications and Member Engagement
Colorado Academy of Family Physicians
(720) 381-4670

About the Colorado Academy of Family Physicians (CAFP)

The CAFP is the leading professional organization dedicated to promoting the specialty of family medicine in Colorado representing 2,500 family physicians, residents, and medical students. Committed to advancing the health of all Coloradans, CAFP works collaboratively with partners to address critical issues in healthcare policy and practice.

Disclaimer: This press release is based on information available as of 1/31/24. Any subsequent developments or changes in the legislative process may not be reflected.