Macon families lobby for Ava's law | News
Families across Central Georgia have been waiting for the chance to make their voices heard all year.
One of the women waiting to make her voice heard was Sarah Spivey, who's son Paxton is severely autistic and requires thousands of dollars in treatment.
"We were trying to get coverage for him when he was younger, but there's so much out there that we did some, but were not able to take advantage of the resources that were out there because its not covered by our insurance."
Anna Bullard wants to help people like Sarah Spivey, but the battle is also personal.
It's her daughter Ava's struggle that inspired the bill.
"This year we really have gained a lot of support that we have not had in the past and I think that goes to all the parents who called and said my kid is waiting to get treatment, they're waiting to learn how to read, they're waiting for help," Bullard said.
For the fifth straight year she's brought that battle to the Capitol, where she says misconceptions about cost have been the bill's biggest hurdle.
State Insurance Chairman Richard Smith says he sympathizes for the families fighting for the bill.
But he says he still can't support it because of what he considers unreasonable costs to insurance companies. He also thinks some people will still be left out.
"It exempts self-insured companies which are your large companies, and the 75% of people in Georgia who have insurance fall in that category," Smith said.
Smith says Ava's Law, which has evolved since it was introduced, exempts changes that are part of the Affordable Care Act and Medicaid and that ultimately the costs outweigh the benefits.
Despite the criticism, Bullard's still confidant this year will be different...for her family and hundreds of others.
"I really feel like there is more of a heart on this issue than there's ever been before," she said.