PCI Urges FEMA to Create ‘MASH’ Units in La.

September 21, 2005

Property Casualty Insurers Association of America is urging the Federal Emergency Management Agency to establish centralized locations in Louisiana to aid the recovery effort and serve as coordinating centers for the insurance industry, local, state and federal government agencies.

“The concept behind these centers would be similar to that of the military’s Mobile Adjusting and Support Headquarters (MASH) units,” said Greg LaCost, regional manager and senior counsel for PCI. “Establishing these units in Louisiana should be a top priority. The MASH units would provide a place for FEMA, the Department of Insurance, insurers, and legislators of the affected areas to coordinate their activities. This would allow policyholders to have a centralized place to get information, meet with their insurer, and have their claims settled more quickly. This effort would expedite the overall recovery effort.”

PCI sent a letter to FEMA strongly encouraging the agency to create MASH units in Louisiana as a way to meet the needs of consumers most devastated by Hurricane Katrina.

“Louisiana’s economic recovery is of the utmost importance and communications between the various entities leading the recovery effort is critical for success,” said LaCost. “MASH units would improve communications between everyone involved in helping the people of Louisiana get back on their feet.

“Consumers would have easy access to the agencies that are making important decisions on a wide range of issues. Lawmakers would be more informed and involved in the process and better able to serve their constituents. PCI will continue to push for locations in Louisiana to be designated as recovery centers. We believe the best way to serve consumers and handle insurance claims is through the well-organized approach that these MASH units would provide.”

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