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Senator Jane Nelson: District 12
Senator Jane Nelson
P.O. Box 12068, State Capitol
Austin, Texas 78711
Tel. (512) 463-0112
News Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 29, 2011
Contact: Janet Elliott
512-463-0112
Committee Passes Bills to Improve Health Care Efficiency, Outcomes

AUSTIN — The Senate Health & Human Services Committee today passed Senate Bills 7 and 8, legislation authored by Senator Jane Nelson, R-Flower Mound, to contain costs associated with health care waste and inefficiency and to reduce preventable medical errors. The bills now go to the full Senate.

"Our current Medicaid payment system unfortunately provides an incentive for overutilization. This legislation re-aligns the financial gains with what should be the true objective of our health care system -- to ensure healthy outcomes for patients and responsible use of the public's health care dollars," said Senator Nelson.

Key Provisions of SB 7:

  • authorizes Medicaid payment reductions in cases of preventable readmissions and complications;
  • establishes copayments for unnecessary emergency room visits;
  • provides incentives for providers who reduce waste and improve quality of care; and
  • initiates a study of pay-for-performance in long-term care.

Key Provisions of SB 8:

  • Establishes the Health Care Collaborative certificate which provides safe harbor from state and federal anti-trust laws for providers who join together to provide care that promotes quality, patient engagement, and coordination of services;
  • develops a statewide plan for improving quality and increasing efficiency through performance-based payments;
  • requires public reporting of potentially preventable readmissions and complications;
  • requires the Department of State Health Services to work with hospitals to create standardized patient identification wristbands based on patient medical characteristics; and
  • requires the health department to study and make recommendations on reporting potentially preventable adverse health conditions that occur in long-term care facilities.
Senator Nelson represents Senate District 12, which includes portions of Denton and Tarrant counties. She is Chairman of the Senate Health & Human Services Committee.

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