Seal of the Senate of the State of Texas Welcome to the Official Website for the Texas Senate
Seal of the Senate of the State of Texas
Welcome to the official website for the
Texas Senate
Senator Jane Nelson: District 12
Senator Jane Nelson
P.O. Box 12068, State Capitol
Austin, Texas 78711
Tel. (512) 463-0112
January 31, 2017
Contact: Melissa Duncan

On the agenda: Article II - Health & Human Services

Public Testimony

View the posting at:

Key Points for Today’s Hearing:

  • Projected FY 16-17 Medicaid costs total nearly 30 percent of the overall state budget.
  • In comparison, Medicaid accounted for approximately 20 percent of the state budget in 2000.
  • Senator Nelson appointed the Workgroup on Health Care Costs to review ways to contain the state’s escalating health care costs across all state agencies.
  • All combined, the FY 16-17 health care costs will total $66 billion across all state agencies, and we are facing a projected 8.5 percent, or $5.6 billion, increase this coming biennium.
  • Health and Human Services Funding in SB 1:
    • Provides $77.4 billion for health and human services, including $61.2 billion for Medicaid;
    • Adds $260 million to address the critical needs of Child Protective Services;
    • Provides a $1 billion commitment to improve the state hospital system and address other state facility needs;
    • Includes $63 million to eliminate waitlists for community mental health services;
    • Provides $284.6 million for women’s health programs – a $31 million increase over FY 16-17 expended levels; and
    • Maintains veterans' services and the Texas Veterans + Family Alliance, a $20 million grant program to assist veterans struggling with post-traumatic stress and other mental health issues.

Statement from Senator Nelson: "We will meet our responsibility to vulnerable Texans and do what is necessary to protect endangered children. We must ensure that our resources are leading to positive outcomes and look for ways to contain our skyrocketing health care costs. If unaddressed, these costs will continue to divert resources away from other needs."