Illinois House Passes Bill to Require Private Insurance Companies to Cover Smoking Cessation
(March 26, 2010) - CHICAGO, IL
Passing with 66 of the required 60 votes, House Bill 5766 now requires all private insurance companies to cover smoking cessation services up to $500 per year. The American Lung Association in Illinois applauds the efforts of Representative Joe Lyons for his work in passing this important piece of legislation.
“It takes the average person several times to quit smoking,” explains Harold Wimmer, President & CEO of the American Lung Association in Illinois. “People who use smoking cessation medications or who use a program like our Freedom From Smoking Online have a much greater chance of quitting for good.”
Smoking cessation options include the use of five nicotine-replacement therapies (gum, patch, lozenge, nasal spray, inhaler), bupropion and varenicline (non-nicotine medications), and three types of counseling (individual, group and phone).
“Tobacco use is at the heart of America’s chronic disease crisis,” says Wimmer. “It claims more than 393,000 lives each year and costs a staggering $193 billion a year in health care costs and lost productivity. This bill helps Illinoisans free themselves from the addicting grip of nicotine.”