Members of the California Assembly have voted 57-12 to approve a bill that could require state-regulated short-term disability insurance policies to provide coverage for disability caused by severe mental illness.
The state Senate Insurance Committee is now considering the measure, Assembly Bill 402.
The A.B. 402 coverage mandate would apply to disability income insurance policies.
The bill would create a definition of “severe mental illness” that would include schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, bipolar disorder, major depressive order, postpartum depression, panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, pervasive developmental disorder, autism, anorexia nervos and bulimia nervosa.
California already requires health insurers and health care service plans to provide the same coverage for severe mental illnesses that they provide for other health problems.
The bill would take effect Jan. 1, 2014.