032423CM0682SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Mike Simmons’ bill expanding coverage for preventative screenings for liver disease advanced out of the House on Monday, May 8.

“Liver disease is a silent killer and leading cause of death in the United States,” said Simmons (D-Chicago). “This bill will help improve health outcomes for people who are both underinsured and at-risk for liver disease.”

Senate Bill 1282 requires Medicaid, private insurance plans and government employee insurance plans to cover preventative screenings for liver disease for individuals who are at high risk for liver disease, ages 35-65 years old. Those screenings can include high-quality preventative screenings such as liver ultrasounds, liver function tests, and other screenings that can help with early detection and management of liver disease.

According to the CDC, in 2021, 56,585 adults in the U.S. died from liver disease, making it the ninth leading cause of death.

“The best chance at fighting any disease is early detection,” said Simmons. “This bill will prevent avoidable and premature deaths by providing equitable preventive health care, especially for those who struggle with substance abuse and addiction.”

Having passed both chambers of the General Assembly, Senate Bill 1282 will be sent to the governor for final approval.

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