It’s good to be Ohio right now, for many reasons.
When it comes to economic development, in 2022 the state landed several enormous projects, including in the areas of computer semiconductor technology, electric vehicles, and advanced batteries. Under the leadership of Governor DeWine, Ohio is creating jobs faster than they can be filled and driving emerging concepts. Not to mention in the state’s insurance industry, currently ranked as one of the largest in the world.
The Ohio Department of Insurance’s nimble regulatory environment and consumer-protection focus is helping foster insurance job creation, innovative approaches in insurance, and a competitive marketplace that generates some of the lowest insurance premiums, on average, in the country for Ohio insurance consumers.
The root of everything we do at the department, as the state’s insurance regulator, is consumer protection. One of our most important successes in 2022 was the department receiving reaccreditation from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), the nation’s state-based insurance regulation system, for our comprehensive approach to regulating insurance company financial solvency, so that companies are financially sound to pay consumers’ insurance claims.
There were other big consumer protection highlights in 2022. The federal and Ohio’s no surprise billing laws became effective. The department implemented the operational parts of the Ohio law and produced educational and compliance-assistance information for consumers, the insurance industry, and health care providers.
We also stood up our Ohio Mental Health Insurance Assistance Office. Office staff strengthened our engagement with consumers, mental health advocates, health care professionals, employers, and other stakeholders by providing educational information and services around helping Ohioans navigate their mental health insurance benefits to access mental health care. Office staff can be reached at 855-GET-MHIA and email@example.com.
In addition, department staff, including myself, took on leadership roles within the NAIC, most notably in the areas of race and insurance, innovation and technology, and life insurance and annuities to help ensure insurance marketplace competition and consumer protection.
While these highlights deserve mention, some of our most important work came from what the talented department staff do day in and day out. They conducted financial analysis of insurance companies; licensed insurance companies, agencies, and agents; monitored insurance business conduct in the marketplace; reviewed insurance products and rates; took action against insurance fraud and insurance professional misconduct; and educated insurance consumers and provided complaint-resolution services.
Our Consumer Services staff, available at 800-686-1526 and firstname.lastname@example.org, addressed thousands of insurance consumer inquiries and complaints. Our Ohio Senior Health Insurance Information Program staff, available at 800-686-1578 and email@example.com, answered Medicare questions and conducted various statewide in-person and virtual educational sessions, helping thousands of Ohioans navigate Medicare.
It’s good to be Ohio right now. As we move into the new year, trust that we at the department will continue to march along to our mission to provide consumer protection through education and fair but vigilant regulation while promoting a stable and competitive environment for insurance companies.