Sen. Karina Villa

SPRINGFIELD – Legislation sponsored by State Senator Karina Villa (D-West Chicago) will allow Illinois visitors and non-resident students to continue to receive therapeutic services via telehealth from an out-of-state certified social worker they have an established relationship with.

“Finding a therapist is a long and arduous process for many people,” Villa said. “This kind of care isn’t a one-size-fits-all situation, and when a good match is found, we should make it as easy as possible for individuals to receive continued care.”

Current law requires clinicians to be licensed in the state where their client is physically located at the time of care, not the state where they reside. House Bill 4797 would allow nonresidents and visitors to Illinois, such as university students, to continue to receive the care they need from their trusted and established therapists.

“As a school social worker, I will continue to advocate for increased access to services a social worker can provide, as I understand just how important these services can be to individuals who need it most” Villa said. “By removing this barrier to care, Illinois will be a leader in increasing access to mental health resources for in-state and out-of-state residents.”

House Bill 4797 unanimously passed out of the Senate Insurance Committee on Wednesday and now awaits further consideration.