The AMA last week urged Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner to sign a bill that would increase patients' access to mental health and substance use disorder treatment by strengthening the state's mental health and substance use disorder parity laws.
The bill which was passed with overwhelming bipartisan support in the Illinois General Assembly and Senate, would make several improvements in Illinois law. It would remove administrative barriers, including step therapy and prior authorization requirements that are not supported by clinical criteria from medical organizations such as the American Society of Addiction Medicine. It also would strengthen the state's ability to investigate potential parity violations, and it would make the findings of those investigations public.
Read the AMA's letter to Gov. Rauner (PDF).
Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder signed legislation on June 22 to add work requirements to the state's Medicaid program. Under the new law, the state will submit a waiver proposal to the federal government to require certain beneficiaries to participate in 80 hours per month of qualifying activities, such as employment, community service or job training.
Certain categories of beneficiaries will be exempt, such as pregnant women, the disabled, full-time students, and caretakers of young children. The waiver proposal will also require beneficiaries to pay premiums up to 5 percent of household income. If the bill's requirements are not approved or are otherwise cancelled or invalidated, the bill requires that the entire Medicaid expansion program be terminated. Approximately 670,000 low-income patients gained coverage from Michigan's Medicaid expansion program, which was first implemented in 2014.