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Lincoln, IL 62656
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On May 22, the Illinois Legislature unanimously voted
to repeal the Uniform Accident and Sickness Policy Provision Law,
which granted insurance companies the right to refuse coverage for
treatment if the primary cause for the injury was alcohol- or
drug-related. Up to 70 percent of all trauma victims are under the
influence of alcohol or other drugs at the time of their injury.
The end result of this law was that emergency room doctors in
many cases would not conduct blood-alcohol screenings, and insurers
would continue paying claims for incidents that could have been
prevented. Studies have shown that addiction-oriented interventions
with trauma patients can cut hospital readmissions by 50 percent --
resulting in significant health care savings. Substance abuse
intervention and treatment work, but a patient must be identified,
assessed and referred to an addiction treatment program in order for
recovery to begin.
[to top of second column in this letter]
We congratulate our representatives for taking this important
step, and Sen. John Cullerton and Rep. Frank J. Mautino for their
sponsorship of the bill. We also encourage the legislature to take
the next step and find the funding needed to place the more than
6,500 Illinois residents who are seeking treatment for their drug
and alcohol addiction in a treatment program.
Philip W. Eaton
Rosecrance Health Network
June 13, 2007]
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