Tuesday, January 23, 2007

New York State Bill Would Make Health Insurers Pay for Autism Services

A state assemblyman from the Bronx has filed a bill that would make every health insurance policy "which provides coverage for hospital, surgical or medical care coverage" also cover services for the diagnosis and treatment of autism spectrum disorders.

The Business Review of Albany, N.Y., reports in this article that the proposal filed by Peter Rivera, a Bronx Democrat who chairs the Assembly's mental health committee, faces questions from an employers' group called the Employer Alliance for Affordable Health Care, which is seeking a state-wide review of health insurance costs and benefits. The business publication also notes that Eliot Spitzer, the new governor, has said he wants to make sure all children in the state receive health insurance.

You can read the text of the bill online here. Notably, the bill's language states that health insurers could not refuse to cover treatments they consider experimental.

The Review also quotes Wendy Harnisher of the Capital District Biomedical Support Group for Autism Spectrum Disorders, who said she knows people "who have had to choose between bankruptcy and losing their homes or getting the best available treatment for people with autism."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It would be nice if all states did the same.