Representatives of the recently formed Vermont advocacy group People for Acupuncture, testified in early February before the Senate Health and Welfare committee on their bill H.573.
The bill would “Require insurance coverage for certain medically necessary health care services when delivered by a licensed acupuncturist.”Ms. Jenni reports: “The Senate is mostly interested in how acupuncture can help with addiction management and cost savings. They would like to see if our bill could fit into their opiate bill. We continue to try to insist we should be able to help on the other end, preventing the prescription opiates in the first place by treating pain management without pharmaceutical meds.”
She said a similar discussion is taking place in the House Health Committee, whose chair is a main sponsor of their bill.
The PFA bill — available at the CMC Vermont State Page –addresses inequitable treatment between providers when treating identical conditions:
“Coverage for medically necessary diagnosis and treatment related to pain management, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder, substance use disorder, and nausea…shall not be denied reimbursement by the health insurer for providing those covered services if the health insurer would reimburse another health care provider for providing the services.”
The bill would take effect as early as Oct. 1 of 2016 and no later than Oct. 1 of 2017.