August 9, 2016

On July 11, 2016, Gov. Walker signed SB 53 into law. The new law contains two separate requirements for fully insured plans in Alaska. The first requirement relates to coverage for autism spectrum disorder. Under current law, coverage must include treatment prescribed by a licensed physician or psychologist. Under the new law, that list includes treatment prescribed by an advanced practice registered nurse practitioner. The second requirement relates to coverage of services provided by midwives. Specifically, under the new law, plans that provide coverage for services performed for women during pregnancy and childbirth (and for a period of time following childbirth) must provide coverage for the same services performed by advanced practice registered nurses, so long as the services performed are within the practice scope of certified midwives (also sometimes referred to as ‘certified nurse midwives’). The law is effective July 7, 2016. Overall, the law adds no new employer compliance obligations, but employers with fully insured plans in Alaska should be aware of the changes.

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