SPRINGFIELD – In an effort to expand access to medication for hereditary bleeding disorders, State Senator Dave Koehler is leading a measure to cut red-tape practices used by insurance companies.

“Residents should not have to wait for lifesaving medication because of restrictive insurance practices,” said Koehler (D-Peoria). “Illinoisans deserve to have access to doctor-recommended medication and treatments without waiting for insurance to determine if they need it.”

House Bill 4055 would prohibit prior authorization for FDA-approved medication for the treatment of hereditary bleeding disorders for up to six months. Prior authorization is a form of approval by insurance companies utilized before agreeing to cover medications and procedures. These checks can be for age, medical necessity, the availability of a medical alternative or drug interactions.

According to the American Society of Hematology, mortality rates and hospitalization rates for bleeding complications from hemophilia — an inherited bleeding disorder in which the blood does not clot properly — were 40% lower among people who received care in hemophilia treatment centers than those who did not receive this care. By eliminating prior authorization, Koehler’s bill aims to streamline the processes for patients to receive necessary treatment.

“In many instances, people need this medication right away,” said Koehler. “This measure puts the power back in the hands of patients and gives them access to the medication they need when they need it.”

House Bill 4055 passed the Senate Insurance Committee on Tuesday and heads to the full Senate for further consideration.