RICHMOND- The Virginia General Assembly voted overwhelmingly today to provide autism insurance coverage to thousands more children across the Commonwealth.
With the end of the 2015 session looming, the Senate voted 36-0 to pass HB 1940. It was then sent quickly to the House of Delegates which followed suit by a vote of 79-17. The bill now goes to the Governor's desk for signature.
The bill was sponsored by Delegate Tag Greason (R-Loudon) who also sponsored Virginia's original autism insurance which was passed in 2011.
If signed, Virginia will join 11 other states that have expanded their original autism insurance reform laws, including Vermont, Texas and Louisiana which all raised the age caps.
Virginia's existing autism insurance law requires large group plans in the fully funded market to cover the diagnosis and treatment of autism for children six and under. HB 1940 will raise required coverage to children ten and under.
Treatment includes psychiatric and psychological care; speech, occupational and physical therapy; and behavioral health treatment, such as Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA). ABA coverage is capped at $35,000 per year.