Sacramento, CA —Last month the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) honored Bonnie Burns, Training and Policy Specialist with California Health Advocates, for her decades of service as a consumer representative. Long recognized as a national expert in her field, Burns brings invaluable contributions and insight to consumer issues from more 30 years of experience in Medicare, Medicare supplemental insurance (Medigap), and long-term care insurance. She has served with the NAIC consumer liaison representative program protecting consumer rights and reforming policy at state and federal levels since the program began over two decades ago in 1992.
“Burns is an inspiration to us all with her many contributions to consumers state and nationwide,” said Elaine Wong Eakin, Executive Director of California Health Advocates. “Her advocacy efforts brought about the standardization of Medicare supplemental insurance, known as Medigap. Before standardization, consumers had no dependable way to compare policies and many unwittingly bought more than one policy with duplicate benefits.”
In addition, Burns has testified before Congress to guide policies for financing long-term care, including improvements for consumers with long-term care insurance. 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.
Burns’ successful advocacy efforts have also resulted in added protections under California state law, such as adopting additional Medigap guaranteed issue rights and consumer protections in long-term care insurance.
“Burns’ work, 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 2016, Burns will continue to represent consumer interests associated with health-related insurance products for Medicare beneficiaries. For more information, read Burns’ biography:http://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, including local HICAPs, which offer Medicare benefits counseling and community education. For more information, visit its website atcahealthadvocates.org.
For more information contact: Elaine Wong Eakin, Executive Director, 510-885-1995