Saturday, May 30, 2009
HEARING SCHEDULED THIS COMING TUES 6/2!
All are welcome to attend the hearing to show their support. Show your support of this legislation--wear your AIM rally T Shirt or buy an AIM shirt at the hearing to show solidarity. There will be panels of self-advocates; parents; Dr. Ruth Anan, PhD, BCBA, Licensed Psychologist and Director of Early Childhood Development at William Beaumont Hospital; Dr. Rick Solomon, MD, The Ann Arbor Center for Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics; and Lorri Unumb, parent and Senior Policy Director & Counsel for Autism Speaks, who will testify on behalf of the bills. Those wishing to provide written testimony need to supply a minimum of 30 copies-- and most importantly, CONTACT YOUR REPRESENTATIVE! If you need help figuring out who your Representative is, please see the links at the right sidebar of this page, or email firstname.lastname@example.org for help.
WE APPRECIATE YOUR TIME AND THE EFFORT YOU PUT INTO WRITING LETTERS TO YOUR LEGISLATORS--IF YOU HAVE NOT DONE SO YET, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE DO IT NOW! :
1. Take the time to write a letter or email and
2. Send us an email at at email@example.com to let us know who you sent your letter to so that we can follow up with those legislators at their offices.
This is integral to passage of this legislation!
See below for instructions for letter writing:
If you do not know who your state Representative is, see link at right sidebar to find out. If you do know who your Rep is but need contact info, go to LIST OF REPS
IT IS ESPECIALLY IMPORTANT TO WRITE THE MEMBERS OF THE HEALTH POLICY COMMITTEE (see list of its members at bottom of this email). It is important to write a letter, if at all possible, and, if you are unable to do that, then please email your legislator.
We have been told by legislators that they tally both letters and emails, but that LETTERS count almost 10 to 1 more than emails.
It is extremely important that you add your own personal experience of how autism affects you and your family. Then please also add these basic talking points to your letter in your own words, it is important that each letter be unique:
1. Be sure to include your full name and mailing address.
2. Autism impairs a person's ability to communicate, learn and relate to others.
3. A recent Texas study determined the state could save up to $771.5 million in special education costs alone within the first 10 years after passing an autism insurance coverage law.
4. Regardless of policy, almost all claims for autism diagnosis and treatment are rejected by insurers in Michigan.
5. A cost analysis of MI's proposed insurance legislation was conducted in 2008 and estimated a rate increase of .5% (James Bouder Study).
6. 14 other states have passed similar legislation.
7. Bills have been introduced in both the House (House Bill 4476 & 4183) and Senate (Senate Bills 359/360) that require medical insurance companies to cover the cost of screening, diagnosis and treatment
AIM Position Statement
2) all people with ASD should be covered, regardless of age.
3) Autism Spectrum Disorder is defined as any of the pervasive developmental disorders as defined by the most recent edition of the DSM.
4) this coverage should include treatments as prescribed or ordered by the insured's treating physician or psychologist and that no insurer may deny coverage for an individual based solely on the fact that the individual is diagnosed with an ASD.
5) covered treatments shall not be subject to visit limits.
6) there should be a provision for an expedited arbitration process if an insurance company denies coverage or changes coverage status.
7) coverage should not be construed as limiting access to benefits or other services that are otherwise available to an individual.
List of Supporting Organizations as of 4/23/10
Ann Arbor Families for Autistic Children's Education and Support
Autism Advisory Group
Autism Insurance in Michigan (AIM)
Autism Resource Network
Autism Society of America
Autism Society of America - Oakland County Chapter
Autism Society of Washtenaw County
Autism Society of WestShore
Autism SpeaksAutism Alliance of Michigan
Behavior Analysts Association of Michigan
Detroit Medical Center
Elder Disability Rights Association Section of the State Bar of Michigan
Family Chiropractic Clinic
First Capital Directories
Fravel Financial Services
GFWC Madison Heights Intermediate Womens Club
Glenn Buege Chevrolet
Henry Ford Health System
Kaufman Children's Center for Speech, Language, Sensory-Motor & Social Connections, Inc.
Michael James Associates
Michigan Association of Elementary and Middle School Principals
Michigan Association of IntermediateSchool Administrators
Michigan Association of School Administrators
Michigan Association of School Boards
Michigan Association of School Psychologists
Michigan Association of School Social Workers
Michigan Council for Maternal and Child Health
Michigan Nurses Association
Michigan Pharmacists Association
Michigan Secondary School Principals Association
Michigan Speech Language Hearing Association
Middle Cities Education Association
Monroe IntermediateSchool District
National Alliance on Mental Illness - Michigan Chapter (member of Partners for Parity)
National Council of Jewish Women, Greater Detroit Section
The Abilities Center
The Ann Arbor Center for Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics
Traverse Bay Area Intermediate School District