A. Notwithstanding the provisions of § 38.2-3419, each insurer proposing to issue individual or group accident and sickness insurance policies providing hospital, medical and surgical, or major medical coverage on an expense-incurred basis; each corporation providing individual or group accident and sickness subscription contracts; and each health maintenance organization providing a health care plan for health care services shall provide coverage providing a minimum stay in the hospital of not less than forty-eight hours for a patient following a radical or modified radical mastectomy and not less than twenty-four hours of inpatient care following a total mastectomy or a partial mastectomy with lymph node dissection for the treatment of breast cancer. Nothing in this section shall be construed as requiring the provision of inpatient coverage where the attending physician in consultation with the patient determines that a shorter period of hospital stay is appropriate. Such provision shall be included under any policy, contract or plan delivered, issued for delivery or renewed in this Commonwealth on and after July 1, 1998.The provisions of this section shall not apply to short-term travel, accident only, limited or specified disease policies, policies or contracts designed for issuance to persons eligible for coverage under Title XVIII of the Social Security Act, known as Medicare, or any other similar coverage under state or federal governmental plans, or to short-term nonrenewable policies of not more than six months’ duration.
1998, c. 631.