Autism Speaks | Autism Insurance Bill Introduced in Mississippi State Legislature (PDF avail.) | February 7, 2008 #AutisticHistory #StopBigAutism #BanABA


[Note: Shared for #AutisticHistory archive purposes. This is NOT An Autistic Ally.]

Autism Insurance Bill Introduced in Mississippi State Legislature

(MISSISSIPPI – February 7, 2008) Mississippi has become the latest state to introduce autism insurance reform legislation. House Bill 487 will require health insurance coverage, including coverage under the state and school employees health insurance plan, for autism spectrum disorders. Provisions of House Bill 487 will include coverage for therapies such as applied behavioral analysis and other evidence based, medically necessary treatments. Introduced in committee by Representative Noel Akins on January 30, 2008, the bill is already gaining significant traction in the House with over 40 cosponsors.

Congratulations to Nicole Boyd, Autism Speaks’ Chapter Advocacy Chair for Mississippi for all of her hard work in spearheading this effort on behalf of her son and other children with autism in her state.


2008 Regular Session

To: Insurance; Appropriations

By: Representatives Akins, Eaton, Aldridge, Baker (8th), Barker, Brown, Buck, Burnett, Calhoun, Carpenter, Chism, Clarke, Cockerham, DuVall, Fillingane, Gadd, Gardner, Hamilton (6th), Holloway, Howell, Huddleston (15th), Huddleston (30th), Janus, Jones, Lane, Martinson, Mayhall, Mayo, McBride, Middleton, Moore, Nowell, Perkins, Pigott, Puckett, Read, Rogers (14th), Shows, Smith (39th), Staples, Stevens, Sullivan, Thomas, Upshaw, Ward, Whittington

House Bill 487



     SECTION 1.  (1)  As used in this act:

          (a)  “Applied behavior analysis” means the design, implementation and evaluation of environmental modifications, using behavioral stimuli and consequences, to produce socially significant improvement in human behavior, including the use of direct observation, measurement and functional analysis of the relations between environment and behavior.

          (b)  “Autism services provider” means any person, entity or group that provides treatment of autism spectrum disorders.

          (c)  “Autism spectrum disorders” means any of the pervasive developmental disorders as defined by the most recent edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), including Autistic Disorder, Asperger’s Disorder and Pervasive Developmental Disorder Not Otherwise Specified.

          (d)  “Diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders” means medically necessary assessment, evaluations or tests to diagnose whether an individual has one (1) of the autism spectrum disorders.

          (e)  “Evidence-based research” means research that applies rigorous, systematic and objective procedures to obtain valid knowledge relevant to autism spectrum disorders.

          (f)  “Habilitative or rehabilitative care” means professional, counseling, and guidance services and treatment programs, including applied behavior analysis, that are necessary to develop, maintain and restore, to the maximum extent practicable, the functioning of an individual.

          (g)  “Health insurance policy” means any group health policy or contract issued by an insurance entity that is subject to Section 83-9-1 et seq. or 83-41-201 et seq., or both.  For the purposes of this act, the State and School Employees Health Insurance Plan shall be considered to be a health insurance policy.

          (h)  “Medically necessary” means any care, treatment, intervention, service or item that is prescribed, provided or ordered by a licensed physician or a licensed psychologist in accordance with accepted standards of practice and that will, or is reasonably expected to, do any of the following:

              (i)  Prevent the onset of an illness, condition, injury or disability;

              (ii)  Reduce or ameliorate the physical, mental or developmental effects of an illness, condition, injury or disability; or

              (iii)  Assist to achieve or maintain maximum functional capacity in performing daily activities, taking into account both the functional capacity of the individual and the functional capacities that are appropriate for individuals of the same age.

          (i)  “Pharmacy care” means medications prescribed by a licensed physician and any health-related services deemed medically necessary to determine the need or effectiveness of the medications.

          (j)  “Psychiatric care” means direct or consultative services provided by a psychiatrist licensed in the state in which the psychiatrist practices.

          (k)  “Psychological care” means direct or consultative services provided by a psychologist licensed in the state in which the psychologist practices.

          (l)  “Therapeutic care” means services provided by licensed or certified speech therapists, occupational therapists or physical therapists.

          (m)  “Treatment for autism spectrum disorders” includes the following care prescribed, provided or ordered for an individual diagnosed with one (1) of the autism spectrum disorders by a licensed physician or a licensed psychologist who determines the care to be medically necessary:

              (i)  Habilitative or rehabilitative care;

              (ii)  Pharmacy care;

              (iii)  Psychiatric care;

              (iv)  Psychological care;

              (v)  Therapeutic care; and

              (vi)  Any care for individuals with autism spectrum disorders that is determined by the Department of Mental Health, Division of Autism, based upon its review of best practices or evidence-based research that is medically necessary and that is properly promulgated under regulations establishing standards for qualified autism services providers.  Once the regulations are promulgated, payment for the treatment of autism spectrum disorders covered under this act shall only be made to autism services providers who meet the standards.

     (2)  A health insurance policy shall provide coverage for the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders and the treatment of autism spectrum disorders in individuals under twenty-one (21) years of age.  To the extent that the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders and the treatment of autism spectrum disorders are not already covered by a health insurance policy, coverage under this act shall be included in health insurance policies that are delivered, executed, issued, amended, adjusted or renewed on or after July 1, 2008.  An insurer shall not terminate coverage, or refuse to deliver, execute, issue, amend, adjust or renew coverage to an individual solely because the individual is diagnosed with one (1) of the autism spectrum disorders or has received treatment for autism spectrum disorders.

     (3)  To be eligible for benefits and coverage under this act, an individual must be diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder at ten (10) years of age or younger.

     (4)  Coverage under this act shall not be subject to any limits on the number of visits an individual may make to an autism services provider.

     (5)  Coverage under this act may be subject to copayment, deductible and coinsurance provisions of a health insurance policy to the extent that other medical services covered by the health insurance policy are subject to those provisions.

     (6)  Coverage under this act for “applied behavior analysis” shall be subject to a maximum benefit of Fifty Thousand Dollars ($50,000.00) per year.  After January 1, 2010, the Insurance Commissioner shall, on an annual basis, adjust the maximum benefit for inflation by using the Medical Care Component of the United States Department of Labor Consumer Price Index for all urban consumers (CPI-U).  The commissioner shall submit the adjusted maximum benefit for publication annually no later than July 1 of each calendar year, and the published adjusted maximum benefit shall be applicable in the following calendar year to health insurance policies subject to this act.  Payments made by an insurer on behalf of a covered individual for any care, treatment, intervention, service or item unrelated to autism spectrum disorders shall not be applied towards any maximum benefit established under this subsection.

     (7)  Except for inpatient services, if an individual is receiving treatment for autism spectrum disorders, an insurer shall have the right to request a review of that treatment not more than once every six (6) months unless the insurer and the individual’s licensed physician or licensed psychologist agrees that a more frequent review is necessary.  The cost of obtaining any review shall be borne by the insurer.

     (8)  This act shall not be construed as limiting benefits that are otherwise available to an individual under a health insurance policy.

     (9)  The Department of Mental Health, Division of Autism, shall establish standards to be used by managed care plans for the credentialing of autism service providers.  The department may require that a managed care plan grant credentials to any autism services provider whom the department determines meets or exceeds the department’s credentialing standards.

     SECTION 2.  This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2008.


Autistic people have fought the inclusion of ABA in therapy for us since before Autism Speaks, and other non-Autistic-led autism organizations, started lobbying legislation to get it covered by insurances and Medicaid. 

ABA is a myth originally sold to parents that it would keep their Autistic child out of an institution. Today, parents are told that with early intervention therapy their child will either be less Autistic or no longer Autistic by elementary school, and can be mainstreamed in typical education classes. ABA is very expensive to pay out of pocket. Essentially, Autism Speaks has justified the big price tag up front will offset the overall burden on resources for an Autistic’s lifetime. The recommendation for this therapy is 40 hours a week for children and toddlers.

The original study that showed the success rate of ABA to be at 50% has never been replicated. In fact, the study of ABA by United States Department of Defense was denounced as a failure. Not just once, but multiple times. Simply stated: ABA doesn’t workIn study after repeated study: ABA (conversion therapy) doesn’t work. 

What more recent studies do show: Autistics who experienced ABA therapy are at high risk to develop PTSD and other lifelong trauma-related conditions. Historically, the autism organizations promoting ABA as a cure or solution have silenced Autistic advocates’ opposition. ABA is also known as gay conversion therapy.

The ‘cure’ for Autistics not born yet is the prevention of birth. 

The ‘cure’ is a choice to terminate a pregnancy based on ‘autism risk.’ The cure is abortion. This is the same ‘cure’ society has for Down Syndrome. 

This is eugenics 2021. Instead of killing Autistics and disabled children in gas chambers or ‘mercy killings’ like in Aktion T4, it’ll happen at the doctor’s office, quietly, one Autistic baby at a time. Different approaches yes, but still eugenics and the extinction of an entire minority group of people.

Fact: You can’t cure Autistics from being Autistic.

Fact: You can’t recover an Autistic from being Autistic.

Fact: You can groom an Autistic to mask and hide their traits. Somewhat. … however, this comes at the expense of the Autistic child, promotes Autistic Burnout (this should not be confused with typical burnout, Autistic Burnout can kill Autistics), and places the Autistic child at high risk for PTSD and other lifelong trauma-related conditions.

[Note: Autism is NOT a disease, but a neurodevelopmental difference and disability.]

Fact: Vaccines Do Not Cause Autism.

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