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California Bill Would Mandate Group Health Plan Coverage for Acupuncture

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(Sacramento, CA)
Friday, May 27, 2011

Studies have shown that the Chinese medical practice combats pain and arthritis.

California Assemblyman Mike Eng is author of the bill.

ENG: Acupuncture has become the mainstream and should be a mainstream option in California health plans.

Eng says some 87% of group policy holders can already get coverage for the treatment.
He says the law could cover some 2 million more, and save tens of millions in out-of-pocket expenses and surgeries. 
But Patrick Johnston of the California Association of Health Plans says this bill is just one in a number that would inflate premium costs.  
JOHNSTON: At the same time that people are justifiably worried about the high cost of health care, the legislature is considering more mandates that will guarantee that costs will go up.
Eng says other states already have acupuncture insurance mandates, including Texas and Florida.
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