P.O. Box 12068, State Capitol
Austin, Texas 78711
Tel. (512) 463-0112
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 2, 1999
AUSTIN -- Cloning, miracle drugs, and other medical advances will come under the microscope of the Senate Health Services Committee over the next several months as part of interim committee assignments announced today by Lieutenant Governor Rick Perry. Interim reports are due Sept. 1, 2000.
Specifically, the interim charge asks the Committee to:
- Inventory and analyze the amount and type of research related to pharmaceuticals, biotechnology and genetics currently occurring in Texas to maximize health benefits and explore ethical implications.
- Evaluate changes in Medicaid and review the program's effectiveness in managing chronic illnesses.
- Review state polices on medical privacy, including the availability of prescription data.
- Monitor the implementation of the Children's Health Insurance Program.
- Assess the Texas health care work force's readiness for health care needs in the next century and evaluate the availability of health care providers in both rural and urban areas.
- Review policies on vaccinations for children.
"These issues laid out by the Lieutenant Governor are critically important to the health of all Texans, and I am eager to begin our work," Senator Nelson, R-Flower Mound and Chairman of the Health Services Committee, said. "Texas has long been a leader in health care policy, which is not an easy task in today's rapidly changing health care environment. We must continue evaluating our laws to make sure that they keep up with the times, taking into account new medical trends, new health care needs and new systems in health care delivery."
During the interim period, Senator Nelson will also explore the impact of health mandates on health care premium costs as a member of the Joint Interim Committee on Health Care Mandates.