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Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Blue Shield to Cover ABA in California

A major health insurance company has settled an enforcement action with state regulators over providing special therapy for autism patients.
California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones on Tuesday said that Blue Shield of California Life & Health Insurance Co. agreed to immediately cover the cost of applied behavior analysis therapy, which Jones described as a well-recognized and effective treatment.
The settlement with the Insurance Department stems from a dispute that began in July when Jones filed an enforcement action against Blue Shield.
"This favorable settlement agreement eliminates the frustration and insecurity so many families have faced when seeking autism treatment for their children," Jones said in a statement.
Blue Shield no longer will deny the therapy as a non-covered service, challenge its medical necessity or force parents to get approval from an independent medical reviewer before starting treatment, Jones said.