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CA Lawmakers Extend Autism Insurance Reform Through 2016

September 06, 2013

SACRAMENTO (September 6, 2013) -- The California Senate gave final legislative approval to a bill extending the state's autism insurance reform law, set to expire next summer, through 2016. The bill now goes to Governor Jerry Brown for his signature.

The measure, SB.126, was authored by Senate President pro Tem Darrell Steinberg (left) who authored the original 2011 law requiring state-regulated health plans to cover autism treatments, including applied behavior analysis (ABA).

According to Steinberg's office, the state Department of Insurance estimates that over 12,500 Californians are receiving early autism treatment, saving taxpayers up to $200 million dollars a year in special education costs, which were previously funded by school districts or regional centers.

The bill originally would have extended the life of the law through 2018, but was amended to provide for a new date of Jan. 1, 2017.