AUGUSTA — A bill to bar annual and lifetime caps on health insurance payments in Maine has won final House and Senate approval and been sent to Gov. John Baldacci.

The bill protects health care policy holders from having to go into debt because they’ve been denied payments for medical treatments. It eliminates limits on payments, with exceptions for several specific types of health plans. It applies to policies issued or renewed after Jan. 1, 2011.

Theresa D’Andrea of Limerick lobbied for the bill’s passage on behalf of her husband, Rocky, who was diagnosed with cancer in 2008. The D’Andreas hit a lifetime cap on their insurance plan, and Theresa’s medical debt is now about $60,000. Rocky D’Andrea died just days before the bill won final approval.

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