Industry News

New Insurance Legislation For Alternatives for Menopausal Symptoms Proposed

September 1, 2002

New Insurance Legislation For Alternatives For Menopausal Symptoms Proposed
On July 24, 2002, Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA) introduced the Hormone Replacement Therapy Alternative Treatment Fairness Act (H.R. 5204) in the U.S. House of Representatives. The legislation would mandate coverage for “hormone replacement therapy and alternative treatments for hormone replacement therapy under the Medicare and Medicaid programs, group health plans and individual health insurance coverage and other Federal health insurance programs.” The Bill, which currently has no cosponsors, would amend the Social Security Act, the Public Health Service Act, the Internal Revenue Code and other laws. The amendments would require Medicare and Medicaid to cover both conventional and alternative therapy for treatment of menopausal symptoms and would prohibit group or individual health plans that provide benefits for outpatient prescription drugs from excluding either conventional or alternative therapy for such treatment. The Bill would limit all such coverage for alternative choices to those therapies that are “recommended by a healthcare provider who is licensed, accredited or certified under State law” and that have been “proven safe and effective in peer-reviewed scientific studies.”