The strategy would mandate the coverage of the condition in a way that is similar to Utah and Georgia.
Treatment for children, teens, and adults who are on the spectrum can be exceptionally expensive, and states are increasingly working to ensure that autism insurance will provide coverage for families who are affected by this condition.
Without coverage, the treatments can be cost prohibitive, as they can range from $40,000 to $60,000 per year.
Traditionally, insurers have been reluctant to offer autism insurance, as they have stated that the issue is one of education systems as opposed to medical treatments. The very central element of this controversy is in applied behavioral analysis (ABA), which is a form of therapy that works to help to boost the participant’s level of functionality or independence through various different forms of behavioral conditioning. For example, if an autistic child was working on building his or her social skills, an appropriate behavior during an activity might be rewarded with verbal praise or a favorite treat.
ABA is considered to be a vital part of treatment for the condition, though autism insurance for it isn’t always easy to find.
Both parents and doctors have seen ABA playing a very important role in the treatment of children on the spectrum, but insurance companies have been insisting that this is not a medical therapy but is a different form of education. This would change the way that it is seen in the eyes of a policy.
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There are 17 states that do not widely mandate private coverage from insurers for this condition. Kansas is among them, and has just seen a State Senate proposal that is working to turn that around. Opposing the bill is Rep. Scott Schwab (R), the House Insurance Committee chair. He feels that it would lead premiums to skyrocket and would require a coverage that many policyholders would never use. He also voiced concern that this would set a precedent of the entry of other specialized forms of coverage being required as a part of standard policies.
While some critics are saying that the autism insurance bill’s proposed coverage is not broad enough, lawmakers are saying that it was developed to present a compromise to the coverage industry, making it possible for “some wins on both sides.”