• RSS News – Lou Lang

    • On Mike Madigan's watch... - Chicago Tribune August 3, 2017
      Chicago TribuneOn Mike Madigan's watch...Chicago TribuneIllinois House Deputy Majority Leader Lou Lang (D-Skokie). (Posted by David Ormsby, Community Contributor). Eric Zorn. For my Friday, Aug. 4, 2017 column, I reached out to the leading Democratic gubernatorial candidates to ask for their responses to ...and more »
    • What Happened to Illinois's Medical Cannabis Advisory Board? - Chicagomag.com August 10, 2017
      Chicagomag.comWhat Happened to Illinois's Medical Cannabis Advisory Board?Chicagomag.comLast spring, three advocates for the state's medical marijuana program received a call from Democratic State Representative Lou Lang, the architect of Illinois's medical cannabis pilot program. Lang told the group, which included Leslie Mendoza Temple ...an […]
    • Special Session Day 3: Education funding bill sets up another tax increase, lawmaker warns - Illinois News Network July 29, 2017
      Illinois News NetworkSpecial Session Day 3: Education funding bill sets up another tax increase, lawmaker warnsIllinois News NetworkLou Lang, D-Chicago, said after the House adjourned for the weekend. "Some schools in the state will open for a few months without state money, some may open all year. Some won't open at all." Lang blamed Rauner f […]
    • Postcard to Boston: Wish you were here, legislators - Chicago Tribune August 7, 2017
      Chicago TribunePostcard to Boston: Wish you were here, legislatorsChicago TribuneEmanuel Chris Welch, D-Hillside, in a Twitter post with a photo of him and Rep. Lou Lang, D-Skokie, inside the Boston Red Sox's famed stadium Sunday. Yet the public schools in Welch's and Lang's districts likely won't receive timely payments from the ...and m […]
    • Illinois Democrats rally at Chairman's Brunch at State Fair - WLS-TV August 17, 2017
      WLS-TVIllinois Democrats rally at Chairman's Brunch at State FairWLS-TV"This group of 1800 would tell you that we've had no organizers ever that have been as good to the Democratic Party as Bruce Rauner and Donald Trump," said Illinois Rep. Lou Lang (D) of Skokie. Part of that effort clearly will involve trying to ...and more »
    • Morning Spin: Rauner repeats erroneous tax assessment charge against Speaker Madigan - Chicago Tribune August 15, 2017
      Chicago TribuneMorning Spin: Rauner repeats erroneous tax assessment charge against Speaker MadiganChicago TribuneRep. Lou Lang, a Democrat from Skokie who serves as a top deputy on Madigan's leadership team, called the allegation “a huge stretch.” “The levy is the levy. This does not take away a single dollar from the school district,” Lang said. “It […]
    • New Do Your Job, Inc. digital ad: “Serious people are questioning whether Governor Rauner has lost it” - The Capitol Fax Blog (blog) August 1, 2017
      New Do Your Job, Inc. digital ad: “Serious people are questioning whether Governor Rauner has lost it”The Capitol Fax Blog (blog)As Senate Bill 1 heads to Governor Rauner's desk, Do Your Job, Inc. is asking him to get a grip, do his job and sign the bill. After decades of talks around reforming the state's education formula, Senate Bill 1 is the on […]
    • David Ormsby - Suburban Chicagoland August 18, 2017
      Suburban ChicagolandDavid OrmsbySuburban Chicagoland... Home Association, Illinois Alcoholism and Drug Dependence Association, TASC, Inc., United HealthCare Illinois, Goldberg, Weisman & Cairo, LLC, DelGaldo Law Group, City of Chicago Heights, City of Berwyn, House Deputy Majority Lou Lang, State Rep.
    • Education Funding Reform Bill Sent To Governor Rauner - eNews Park Forest August 1, 2017
      eNews Park ForestEducation Funding Reform Bill Sent To Governor RaunereNews Park ForestSchool District 163 average property tax bill, education funding reform A breakdown of the average property tax bill for Park Forest residents of School District 163 shows that 55% of taxes collected go to school districts. (Park Forest 2017-2018 Budget).and more »
    • Representative Lou Lang on the Illinois budget impasse: “It's part of an orchestrated decision by the Rauner ... - WGN Radio June 15, 2017
      WGN RadioRepresentative Lou Lang on the Illinois budget impasse: “It's part of an orchestrated decision by the Rauner ...WGN RadioSome are embarrassed that the state of Illinois is being pulled from the lottery. And the Illinois Department of Transportation has announced that all construction in Illinois may stop if there is still no budget by the end o […]
  • RSS Blogs – Lou Lang

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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).