Legislative Announcement 4/19/21

Great news!

LB 487 passed on April 15, 2021.  43-0.  Senators gave final approval to a bill that creates insurance parity for mental health services provided through telehealth in Nebraska.

1)  The bill requires that the reimbursement rate for telehealth treatment for a mental health condition be the same as the for a comparable treatment provided in person.

2)  The bill prohibits a private health insurance plan that covers mental health treatment from establishing rates, terms or conditions that place a greater financial burden on an insured for accessing treatment via telehealth.

Senator John Arch of La Vista, chair of Health and Human Services Committee of the legislature, introduced this bill.  NAMFT is the behavioral health organization which actively lobbied for this bill.  The other organizations which testified as proponents were Nebraska Psychiatric Society, CHI Health, NABHO, and Lutheran Family Services of Nebraska.

Governor Ricketts has five days since April 15  to sign this bill and then three months after the end of the this legislative session  (tentative June 10)  the law shall be effective.  

Thank you to those of you who responded to my requests for help to speak to your senators of your districts.  Thanks to the solid support of NAMFT President, Paul Springer, and the rest of my core group  (which has been  named in my previous email 2/18/2021  to you),  and very specific thanks to Tracey Minto who offered extensive clinical assistance and Cassandra Leow who offered extensive academic supportive materials. Yes, it takes a village!

Anne Buettner
Legislative Chair
308 383 7000

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