State lawmakers in Nevada are trying to replace their state’s current autism therapy benefits mandate.
Assemblyman James Ohrenschall, D-Las Vegas, and two colleagues have introduced Assembly Bill 369, a bill that could require state-regulated health plans to cover an unlimited amount of medically necessary applied behavioral analysis (ABA) therapy.
Today, Nevada requires carriers to cover ABA therapy — an intensive form of therapy that can cost as much as $100,000 per year in some areas — but lets the carriers limit benefits to $36,000 per year.
Under A.B. 369, the minimum benefit cap for ABA therapy for autism would be enough coverage to pay for “30 hours of treatment per week unless a treatment provides for additional hours of treatment.”
The bill also would require a carrier to include to autism benefits in the basic benefits package, rather than simply making autism benefits an available option; forbid an insurer from denying coverage for an autism treatment on the basis that the treatment was educational in nature; forbid a carrier from asking for copies or reviews of an autism treatment plan more than once a year; and expand access to autism spectrum disorder benefits to include adults.
The bill would take effect July 1.
The bill is under the jurisdiction of the Assembly Commerce and Labor Committee.