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(Contact: Tammy M. Smith 342-9127)

1999 Regular Session

contents.gif (163 bytes)MENTAL HEALTH COVERAGE

House Bill 1300 by Representative Donelon and Senate Bill 235 by Senator Bajoie force insurance companies to recognize mental illness as a disease and mandates coverage for treatment. House Bill 1300 (Act 1285) by Representative Donelon requires minimum coverage for a variety of serious mental illnesses including schizophrenia, anorexia, bulimia and depression. This coverage must include at least 45 days of inpatient care and 52 days of outpatient care. However, coverage is limited to companies with 35 or more employees. Senate Bill 235 (pending Senate Committee) by Senator Bajoie would have required payment for costs involving treatment of mental disorders, including substance abuse. This bill would require insurers to include the same mental health coverage already offered to state employees and the legislators through state employees group benefit.

contents.gif (163 bytes)CANCER CLINICAL TRIALS

Senate Bill 761 (Act 1357) by Senator Bean provides health insurance coverage for costs involved in cancer clinical trials. The idea is to give more cancer patients access to the newest treatments and advance medical progress in the fight against cancer. The trials have to be approved by specific federal agencies.

contents.gif (163 bytes)TRANSPLANT CENTERS

Senate Bill 417 (Act 207) by Senator Bean requires insurers to allow certified transplant centers located in Louisiana to be included in preferred or exclusive provider networks. Before the center could be considered, the center must follow certain certification guidelines.

contents.gif (163 bytes)CONTRACEPTIVES

Legislators also offered legislation for preventative measures. Senate Bill 1034 (pending Senate Committee) by Senator Irons would have required insurers to include contraceptives and contraceptive services as part of their health plans. Coverage would have to be provided for any contraceptive drug or device approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as long as its obtained by prescription. It would require companies to charge the same co-payment for contraceptives as for other prescription drug. This bill excluded businesses operated by church related groups or church affiliated insurance companies opposed to birth control.

contents.gif (163 bytes)IMPOUNDMENT

Senator Cleo Fields introduced Senate Bill 231 (pending Senate Committee) which would have repealed the state towing requirement for noncompliance with the compulsory motor vehicle law. This bill would instead issue a citation to the violator and give an insurer ten days to prove proof of insurance.

contents.gif (163 bytes)FRAUD INVESTIGATION UNIT

Senate Bill 955 (pending House Call Calendar) by Senator Lentini would have created a fraud investigative unit within the Department of Public Safety and Corrections, office of state police. This unit would work in conjunction with the Department of Insurance and the Attorney General's office to investigate and prosecute insurance fraud. Investigations would target violators such as doctors, lawyers and clients staging scams by faking accident reports to collect bogus claims.

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