Olympia, WA (January 19, 2009) Last week, an autism insurance reform bill has been introduced in the Washington State legislature. House Bill 1210, sponsored by State Representative Brendan Williams (D-22), and Senate Bill 5203, sponsored by State Senator Steve Hobbs (D-44), will require private healthcare policies to provide coverage of the diagnosis and treatment of autism spectrum disorders. HB 1210 and SB 5203 will cover applied behavior analysis (ABA) and other medically necessary, evidence-based treatments prescribed by an insured's treating physician or psychologist. Coverage for autism treatments and therapies shall be subject to a maximum benefit of $50,000 annually through age 21.
There are currently eight states that have passed similar bills. HB 1210 has been referred to the Washington House Health Care & Wellness Committee. SB 5203 has been referred to the Senate Health & Long-Term Care Committee. Both bills are awaiting a hearing.