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A bill authored by District 48 State Sen. Mark Messmer of Jasper that would help support Hoosiers who experience chronic pain passed the Senate unanimously.

Senate Bill 162 would require Medicaid, state employee health plans, policies of accident and sickness insurance, and health maintenance organization contracts to provide medical coverage for chronic pain management.

Messmer notes that chronic pain causes many Hoosiers great discomfort, hindering them from taking part in everyday activities. He adds that the bill would help those with arthritis, and other conditions get the assistance and treatment they need.

In 2018, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that more than 20 percent of adults in the United States live with chronic pain. Chronic pain is a reoccurring pain that lasts more than three months. This is different than acute pain, which alerts a person to an injury or sickness, such as a sprained ankle or stomachache.

Senate Bill 162 now moves on to the House of Representatives for further consideration.

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