TMA Legislative News Hotline
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
- HB 2149 by Rep. Craig Eiland (D-Galveston) would prevent an HMO or an insurer that contracts with a rural hospital (critical access or sole community hospital, located in a county with a population of no more than 50,000) from denying the hospital the opportunity to provide ancillary services.
- HB 2723 by Rep. Armando Walle (D-Houston) would require health insurers to give enrollees 60-days notice before they increase insurance premiums. This applies to patients enrolled in an individual or small-employer health plan. The notice also must include the effective date and the amount of the increase.
- HB 3017 by Rep. John Smithee (R-Amarillo) would put in statute what was adopted through rulemaking late last year after the Office of Public Insurance Counsel (OPIC) petitioned the Texas Department of Insurance to prohibit the use of discretionary clauses in insurance policies. TMA supported OPIC’s request and commented heavily during the rulemaking process over the past year.
- Places the responsibility for all clinical matters — bylaws, credentialing, utilization review, and peer review — under the medical staff;
- Guarantees physicians’ independent medical judgment;
- States that all physicians — employed or independent — are subject to the same rights and responsibilities;
- Allows employed physicians to participate in the selection of their liability insurance and have the right to consent to settle in a liability action; and
- Requires the medical staff to designate a chief medical officer (CMO) who must be approved by the hospital board. The CMO has the duty to report to TMB that the hospital is hiring physicians under this bill and that the CMO is the contact for TMB. The CMO has a duty to report instances of interference to TMB.
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Physician Bills Raise Concern About Safety, Motive (Texas Tribune)
In Our View: David Dewhurst's plan to save Texas (Odessa American Online)
UIL formulates stricter concussion guidelines (Austin American-Statesman)
Republicans' 2012 budget plan alters Medicare, Medicaid (Healthcare Finance News)