Welcome!

News Feed Item

Families Rally at Georgia State Capitol to Urge Insurance Committee to Vote on Ava's Law for Autism Insurance Reform

ATLANTA, Feb. 4, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Parents, families and children who have autism rallied at the State Capitol today to urge the chairs of the Legislature's Insurance and Labor Committee to allow the committee to vote on Ava's Law for autism insurance reform, said Anna Bullard, the mother of Ava, for whom the proposed law is named.

Ava's Law (SB 191/HB 309), which is sponsored by Sen. John Albers and Rep. Ben Harbin, would require state-regulated health plans to cover medically necessary services for the evaluation, assessment, testing, screening, diagnosing and treatment of autism spectrum disorder. (A fact sheet on Ava's Law is here.) The bill has been in the committee, which is chaired in the Senate by Sen. Tim Golden and the House by Rep. Richard Smith, since 2009, but hasn't moved.

"Members of the Insurance and Labor Committee tell us they want to vote on Ava's Law, but they're not getting the chance," said Bullard. "We're here to urge Sen. Golden and Rep. Smith to let the committee vote. Sen. Golden and Rep. Smith: children are waiting."

Families of children who have autism and people who want children with autism to receive the treatment that can help them reach their full potential met at the Capitol to share their stories with legislators. Many brought pictures of their children to display on posters and created handmade signs reading, "CHILDREN ARE WAITING; LET THE INSURANCE COMMITTEE VOTE ON AVA'S LAW NOW."

Ava Bullard was diagnosed with autism at age two and denied coverage under the state employee health plan. Her mother was told Ava would never able to speak or be in a regular classroom. Ava did not feed herself, gesture, make eye contact or play with her sisters.

Anna searched for scientifically proven treatment and paid out of pocket for Ava to receive intensive Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy, resulting in significant improvement. Today, Ava is a fourth-grader in a general education classroom in Lyons, Ga., who no longer requires intensive treatment and loves playing with her sisters.

Georgia is one of only 16 states that do not require insurers to pay for autism therapy.

Families also wrote thank-you notes to Gov. Deal, who has recommended the state employee health plan cover treatment for autism. Claims data from states that have required similar coverage for several years indicates an average premium impact of 32 cents per member, per month – less than the cost of a postage stamp.

"On behalf of the families, interested stakeholders, legislators and health care providers who fought to make this legislation a reality, I plan to fight and make this bill the law in Georgia in 2014," Albers said. "I'm confident that Ava's Law is sound legislation that will go a long way toward providing the care needed for early behavioral and cognitive intervention. It is time for Ava's Law to be heard and voted upon. This is both morally right and fiscally conservative – in other words, a 'no-brainer.'"

Harbin said autism insurance reform makes ethical and economic sense for Georgia.

"With an average cost of 32 cents a month, autism insurance reform isn't a fiscal issue, it's a quality of life issue," Harbin, who sponsors the bill in the House, said. "Early intervention and Applied Behavior Analysis therapy are proven to help children with autism gain social and behavioral skills to reach their full potential and become contributing members of society."

"Thirty-four states and counting have passed autism insurance reform legislation," Judith Ursitti, vice president of governmental affairs for Autism Speaks, said. "Many self-funded companies are following suit. Yet Georgia families continue to struggle for access to meaningful autism coverage. It's time for the legislature to protect its most vulnerable citizens and move forward with passage of Ava's Law."

Lawmakers passed a resolution commending Ava "on her continued efforts toward the passage of Ava's Law in Georgia in order to benefit others with autism and recognize Feb. 4, 2014, as Ava's Law Day at the Capitol."

Ava addressed legislators, saying, "I'm grateful for my treatment. Please pass Ava's Law."

According to the Centers for Disease Control, autism now affects one in 88 children and one in 54 boys. According to Autism Speaks, it is the fastest-growing developmental disability, affecting 1.5 million Americans.

CONTACT 
Anna Bullard
(912) 293-5217
[email protected]

 

SOURCE Anna Bullard

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that T-Mobile will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. As America's Un-carrier, T-Mobile US, Inc., is redefining the way consumers and businesses buy wireless services through leading product and service innovation. The Company's advanced nationwide 4G LTE network delivers outstanding wireless experiences to 67.4 million customers who are unwilling to compromise on ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Infranics will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Since 2000, Infranics has developed SysMaster Suite, which is required for the stable and efficient management of ICT infrastructure. The ICT management solution developed and provided by Infranics continues to add intelligence to the ICT infrastructure through the IMC (Infra Management Cycle) based on mathemat...
MongoDB Atlas leverages VPC peering for AWS, a service that allows multiple VPC networks to interact. This includes VPCs that belong to other AWS account holders. By performing cross account VPC peering, users ensure networks that host and communicate their data are secure. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Jay Gordon, a Developer Advocate at MongoDB, will explain how to properly architect your VPC using existing AWS tools and then peer with your MongoDB Atlas cluster. He'll discuss the secur...
Historically, some banking activities such as trading have been relying heavily on analytics and cutting edge algorithmic tools. The coming of age of powerful data analytics solutions combined with the development of intelligent algorithms have created new opportunities for financial institutions. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Sebastien Meunier, Head of Digital for North America at Chappuis Halder & Co., will discuss how these tools can be leveraged to develop a lasting competitive advanta...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute, owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Interoute is the owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform which encompasses 12 data centers, 14 virtual data centers and 31 colocation centers, with connections to 195 add...
Most companies are adopting or evaluating container technology - Docker in particular - to speed up application deployment, drive down cost, ease management and make application delivery more flexible overall. As with most new architectures, this dream takes a lot of work to become a reality. Even when you do get your application componentized enough and packaged properly, there are still challenges for DevOps teams to making the shift to continuous delivery and achieving that reduction in cost ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloudistics, an on-premises cloud computing company, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Cloudistics delivers a complete public cloud experience with composable on-premises infrastructures to medium and large enterprises. Its software-defined technology natively converges network, storage, compute, virtualization, and management into a ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that SD Times | BZ Media has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 6–8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. BZ Media LLC is a high-tech media company that produces technical conferences and expositions, and publishes a magazine, newsletters and websites in the software development, SharePoint, mobile development and commercial UAV markets.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Juniper Networks (NYSE: JNPR), an industry leader in automated, scalable and secure networks, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Juniper Networks challenges the status quo with products, solutions and services that transform the economics of networking. The company co-innovates with customers and partners to deliver automated, scalable and secure network...
In his session at Cloud Expo, Alan Winters, an entertainment executive/TV producer turned serial entrepreneur, will present a success story of an entrepreneur who has both suffered through and benefited from offshore development across multiple businesses: The smart choice, or how to select the right offshore development partner Warning signs, or how to minimize chances of making the wrong choice Collaboration, or how to establish the most effective work processes Budget control, or how to max...
"I think that everyone recognizes that for IoT to really realize its full potential and value that it is about creating ecosystems and marketplaces and that no single vendor is able to support what is required," explained Esmeralda Swartz, VP, Marketing Enterprise and Cloud at Ericsson, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Why do your mobile transformations need to happen today? Mobile is the strategy that enterprise transformation centers on to drive customer engagement. In his general session at @ThingsExpo, Roger Woods, Director, Mobile Product & Strategy – Adobe Marketing Cloud, covered key IoT and mobile trends that are forcing mobile transformation, key components of a solid mobile strategy and explored how brands are effectively driving mobile change throughout the enterprise.
After more than five years of DevOps, definitions are evolving, boundaries are expanding, ‘unicorns’ are no longer rare, enterprises are on board, and pundits are moving on. Can we now look at an evolution of DevOps? Should we? Is the foundation of DevOps ‘done’, or is there still too much left to do? What is mature, and what is still missing? What does the next 5 years of DevOps look like? In this Power Panel at DevOps Summit, moderated by DevOps Summit Conference Chair Andi Mann, panelists l...
My team embarked on building a data lake for our sales and marketing data to better understand customer journeys. This required building a hybrid data pipeline to connect our cloud CRM with the new Hadoop Data Lake. One challenge is that IT was not in a position to provide support until we proved value and marketing did not have the experience, so we embarked on the journey ourselves within the product marketing team for our line of business within Progress. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Sum...
Virtualization over the past years has become a key strategy for IT to acquire multi-tenancy, increase utilization, develop elasticity and improve security. And virtual machines (VMs) are quickly becoming a main vehicle for developing and deploying applications. The introduction of containers seems to be bringing another and perhaps overlapped solution for achieving the same above-mentioned benefits. Are a container and a virtual machine fundamentally the same or different? And how? Is one techn...