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Lawmakers Eye Costs of Autism Coverage Law
Written by Your 5News Team
Last updated on March 06, 2012 @ 6:24PM
Created on March 06, 2012 @ 2:06PM
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - Last-minute cost concerns are delaying legislation meant to fix West Virginia's new autism insurance coverage law.

But Senate President Jeff Kessler on Tuesday said that the law's spending containment language should allow a Thursday vote.

The pending bill would make clear that the law's benefit caps are meant for applied behavioral analysis. Experts consider ABA treatment crucial for many children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders.

Insurers want the caps to apply to all autism-related coverage. The Public Employees Insurance Agency estimated Tuesday that the bill would cost it at least $3 million annually.

But the 2011 law also allows insurers to pursue additional savings measures if autism coverage increases annual plan costs by 1 percent or more. Kessler said that may resolve cost concerns.

The legislative session ends Saturday.
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