HONOLULU (AP) — A proposed law in the state Legislature would require insurance companies to cover air ambulance rides to the mainland for critical procedures not offered in Hawaii.

KHON-TV reported Tuesday that the measure would take the burden off families that are put in tough situations due to the cost of air ambulance rides.

Tammy Tam, wife of the late ex-deputy attorney general Rodney Tam, says she experienced firsthand how current policies complicate care.

Tam says that when her husband fell ill, doctors told them he needed a lung transplant, which couldn't be done in Hawaii. Her insurance covered the transplant, but she had to pay out of pocket for the flight to California on a specialized plane. Such a flight costs anywhere from $80,000 to $130,000.

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Information from: KHON-TV, http://khon.com

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