HD36 - Mandated Coverage for Training and Education in the Use of EEG Biofeedback Equipment and Techniques

  • Published: 2001
  • Author: Special Advisory Commission on Mandated Health Insurance Benefits
  • Enabling Authority: Code of Virginia - § 9-298

Executive Summary:

During the 2000 Session of the General Assembly, the House Committee on Corporations, Insurance and Banking referred House Bill 653 to the Special Advisory Commission on Mandated Health Insurance Benefits (Advisory Commission). House Bill 653 was patroned by Delegate Alan A. Diamonstein.
Delegate Diamonstein submitted amended language on August 29, 2000.

The Advisory Commission held a hearing on October 4, 2000 in Richmond to receive public comments on House Bill 653. In addition to the patron, a Ph. D. from Riverside Neurotherapy Services, and the president of a technology development and commercialization firm specializing in advanced feedback technology spoke in support of the bill. Written comments supporting House Bill 653 were received prior to the public hearing from concerned citizens and several professional counselors and licensed clinicians representing private and group practices. Representatives from the Virginia Academy of Clinical Psychologists, Shoney's/Captain D's Restaurants, the Virginia Association of Health Plans (VAHP), and the Health Insurance Association of America (HIAA) spoke in opposition to the bill. Written comments opposing the bill were received from the Virginia Manufacturers Association (VMA), HIAA, VAHP, and Blue Cross Blue Shield (Trigon). A representative of the Medical College of Virginia also provided comments on the bill.

The Advisory Commission concluded its review of the bill on December 14, 2000.


House Bill 653, as amended, required an accident and sickness insurance policy to provide coverage for EEG biofeedback as a treatment for attention deficit disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, depression, stress-related and anxiety disorders, Tourette's Syndrome, insomnia, migraine headaches, or epilepsy.

The amended bill limits application of EEG biofeedback to Attention Deficit Disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (AD/HD). It clarifies which medical professionals are qualified to diagnose the need for EEG biofeedback training and education. Once the appropriate evaluation has been completed and a diagnosis made, EEG biofeedback training will be provided by or under the direct supervision of a licensed health practitioner who is a certified EEG biofeedback clinician.

The amended bill also requires that benefits will be provided for EEG biofeedback training and education in the use of equipment and techniques as prescribed and provided by a licensed medical doctor, doctor of osteopathy, or clinical psychologist.

House Bill 653 requires the EEG biofeedback clinician to be certified by the Biofeedback Certification Institute of America (BCIA) or a comparable organization accredited by the National Organization of Certifying Agencies. Treatment and training sessions may be provided in the office of a certified provider, or, in the home, when a one-time equipment purchase fee will be reimbursed.

The bill defines "EEG biofeedback" as electroencephalogram biofeedback or neurofeedback as a treatment for attention deficit disorder and attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder.

The bill applies to individual and group policies providing hospital, medial and surgical or major medical coverage on an expense-incurred basis and subscription contracts and health care plans provided by health maintenance organizations. The bill does not apply to short-term travel, accident only, limited or specified disease policies, or to policies or contracts designed for issuance to persons eligible for Medicare or similar coverage under state or federal governmental plans.