Illinois becomes 1st state requiring insurers to cover treatment for kids with PANDAS

CHICAGO --Illinois has become the first state in the nation to require insurance companies to cover treatment for kids who have a controversial medical condition called PANDAS.

PANDAS stands for Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorder Associated with Streptococcal Infections.

Children get strep throat and eventually their immune system starts attacking their brain, making them act like they have obsessive compulsive disorder or other mental health issues.

"Charlie’s Law" requires insurance companies to cover medical treatment for the disease, including a controversial treatment called IVIg, which costs up to $15,000.

The bill's passage was a bi-partisan effort, with 54 senators out of 60 cosponsoring the legislation.

The families say insurance companies worked hard to oppose the law.

More than 20 other states are considering similar measures.

It's estimated nearly 175,000 children and adolescents in Illinois are affected by PANDAS.