• RSS News – Lou Lang

    • Medical marijuana rules get Illinois committee OK - MyFox Chicago July 16, 2014
      SFGateMedical marijuana rules get Illinois committee OKMyFox ChicagoYou have to have a bonafide relationship with a doctor,” Lang added. Medical cannabis program coordinator Bob Morgan says interested patients should start talking with their doctors about the program. The Illinois State Medical Society is helping its ...Illinois approves rules for medical ma […]
    • Softball: McCollum rolls to 2-0 series lead - Delaware County Daily Times July 25, 2014
      Softball: McCollum rolls to 2-0 series leadDelaware County Daily TimesThe Lawrence Park semifinals aren't over yet, but Dog House dug itself a big hole. McCollum Insurance's bats made sure of that. McCollum's lineup mashed out 41 runs over two games Thursday, taking the first two games of its best-of-5 semifinal series ...
    • Quinn Signs New Bill that gives Epilepsy Patients Access to Medical Marijuana - The Chicago Monitor July 23, 2014
      Quinn Signs New Bill that gives Epilepsy Patients Access to Medical MarijuanaThe Chicago MonitorSoon adults and children with epilepsy will gain access to the use of medical marijuana in Illinois under a law signed on Sunday, July 20, by Democratic Governor Pat Quinn. This new law, or SB 2636, is the latest in a series of governmental measures ...and more » […]
    • Medical marijuana: The risk/reward debate for hospitals - Healthcare Dive July 23, 2014
      Medical marijuana: The risk/reward debate for hospitalsHealthcare DiveSays Illinois representative Lou Lang (D), a supporter of medical marijuana: "It's clear the federal government is trying to stay out of the way of legal medical marijuana sales, and it may be [hospitals operating dispensaries] wouldn't have a problem ...
    • Illinois Legislature Approves Medical Marijuana for Epileptic Adults and Children - The National Law Review July 23, 2014
      Illinois Legislature Approves Medical Marijuana for Epileptic Adults and ChildrenThe National Law ReviewDuring prior committee hearings, the sponsor of the bill, Rep. Lou Lang (D-Skokie) indicated he planned to offer further amendments to the bill that would prohibit children from smoking the medical cannabis. During the debate on the House floor ...and more […]
    • Report: More Illinois children living in poverty - Chicago Daily Herald July 22, 2014
      Report: More Illinois children living in povertyChicago Daily HeraldGov. Pat Quinn has signed legislation that will allow minors with epilepsy to use medical marijuana.The governor signed the measure Sunday in Chicago. It was sponsored by Democratic state Sen. Iris Martinez of Chicago and Rep. Lou Lang of Skokie.and more »
    • Quinn OKs cannabis use for kids with epilepsy - Chicago Daily Herald July 21, 2014
      Quinn OKs cannabis use for kids with epilepsyChicago Daily HeraldLou Lang of Skokie. The law adds seizures to the list of treatable conditions in Illinois' medical cannabis program. It allows children with seizures from epilepsy to consume oil from the marijuana plant with a parent's consent. Currently, only ...
    • Quinn to OK cannabis use for kids with epilepsy - Dekalb Daily Chronicle July 20, 2014
      ReutersQuinn to OK cannabis use for kids with epilepsyDekalb Daily ChronicleIris Martinez and Rep. Lou Lang this spring. The bill would add epilepsy to the list of treatable diseases in Illinois' medical cannabis pilot program. It also would allow children with epilepsy to consume oil from the marijuana plant with a parent's ...Quinn OKs MediPot fo […]
    • Genesee Valley Partnership honors graduates - The Daily News Online July 22, 2014
      Genesee Valley Partnership honors graduatesThe Daily News OnlineThrough the generosity of Ellen McEwen and Lou Lang, the Batavia Rod & Gun Club, and contributions from many sportsmen's clubs and organizations in Western New York, two Paul Levins Memorial Awards have been established. This year's Paul Levins ...
    • Sound Check: He's back, so folks can stop hating on LeBron - Akron Beacon Journal July 23, 2014
      Sound Check: He's back, so folks can stop hating on LeBronAkron Beacon JournalNBA basketball star LeBron James, center, applauds after renowned pianist Lang Lang, right play during a Nike-sponsored event in Beijing, China, Monday. Four years after he left for Miami, a widely criticized departure that damaged his image and ...and more »
  • RSS Blogs – Lou Lang

Illinois House Advances Rep. Lou Lang’s Mental Health Parity Enforcement Plan

(Springfield, IL) – A legislative plan to put state enforcement power behind a new federal mental health parity law is advancing in the Illinois General Assembly.

The legislation, House Bill 1530, which the Illinois House approved, 79-32, on April 6, upgrades Illinois’ existing mental health insurance parity law to match federal requirements approved in July 2010 and to give the Illinois Department Insurance the power to enforce the federal standards.

“Federal enforcement is a more remote, lighter touch, relying on telephone calls and mail,” said House Deputy Majority Lou Lang (D-Skokie).

“By matching state law to the federal standards, the Illinois Insurance Department can enforce the federal standards more aggressively than the federal government could by virtue of state face-to-face enforcement activities.”

Lang noted that neither the federal nor state law mandate mental health insurance as defined benefit, but require mental health coverage if other health benefits are offered.

“The federal law does not require coverage for mental and emotional disorders, but does require parity if such coverage is offered for hospital or medical treatment,” said Lang.

In addition to bringing Illinois’s mental health law into compliance with federal standards, Lang’s bill also adds substance abuse treatment and autism care to the list of parity required health insurance benefits.

“Addiction health care and autism health care are vital parts of the broader field of behavioral health care,” said Lang. “And their inclusion as part of a insurance parity framework is critical.”

These provisions are applicable to any plan of a small employer (with 2-50 employees), according to Lang.

“Again, the law does not require coverage for mental, substance abuse or autism,” said Lang. “It only requires parity if other health care treatments are offered.”

Illinois Department of Insurance Director Michael McRaith has noted before an earlier House committee hearing that the independent U.S. Congressional Budget Office found that parity would only cause health insurance premiums to rise by 0.4 percent.

Moreover, research shows that patients that have completed substance use disorder treatment have been shown to reduce emergency room visits by 39%, hospital stays by 35% and total medical costs by 26%.

“House approval of this legislation is an important step toward bringing health insurance parity to addiction health care,” said Lang. “However, the Senate is another key legislative hurdle in the process.”

In addition to Lang, other House sponsors include State Reps: Robyn Gabel (D), William Davis (D), Naomi Jakobsson (D), Fred Crespo (D), Dave Winters (R), Al Riley (R), Sara Feigenholtz (D) Mary Flowers (D) Joe Lyons (D), Maria Antonia Berrios (D), Jack Franks (D), Keith Farnham (D), Linda Chapa LaVia (D), Camille Lilly (D), Cynthia Soto (D), Ann Williams (D), Elizabeth Hernandez (D), John D’Amico (D), Daniel Biss (D), Pat Verschoore (D), and Harry Osterman (D).

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