WASHINGTON, DC – At today’s Financial Services Subcommittee on Housing, Community Development and Insurance hearing, Insuring against a Pandemic: Challenges and Solutions for Policyholders and Insurers, business owners and insurance industry experts made clear that the lack of pandemic risk insurance is a pervasive problem that requires a federal response as set forth in Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney’s H.R. 7011, the Pandemic Risk Insurance Act. You can watch the Congresswoman’s opening statement here.
“Today’s hearing was an important step in moving forward with a plan to create a Federal program to support a market for pandemic risk insurance policies as outlined in my Pandemic Risk Insurance Act,” said Congresswoman Maloney after the hearing. “An overwhelming number of witnesses testified that this type of program is necessary and important for the economy and protecting businesses of all sizes in the event of future pandemics.
“Tens of thousands of businesses large and small have been forced to close their doors permanently while entire industries — including travel, film, television, and hospitality — have been upended. They have no way to protect themselves from pandemic-related losses and we cannot continue to expose our economy and the small business community to this level of risk and expect them to recover. We know the Federal government will step in during the next crisis, and so we should be proactive now by developing a framework for Federal assistance.
“After today’s hearing, it’s clear that there is broad consensus that pandemic risk is insurable and that the best solution combines the strengths of the insurance industry with the scale and protection offered by the Federal government — truthfully, we’re now simply debating the best way to structure such a program and that is a huge step forward from where we were in the summer when some insurers didn’t want to talk about this at all.
“I am focused now on working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle and with stakeholders to do just that. I am excited to move forward with this bill and believe that it will be made law in the beginning days of Joe Biden’s presidency, concluded the Congresswoman.”