FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 3, 2013
General Counsel & Press Secretary
AUSTIN — Today, the Texas Senate passed a bill by Senator Eddie Lucio, Jr. (D-Brownsville) which would allow for the creation of specialized day health facilities for special needs children. These facilities will allow children to flourish in a group setting, provide working parents relief, and reduce overall health care costs.
Senate Bill 492 authorizes the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services (DADS) to license and regulate a new type of non-residential medical day health facility, known as a Prescribed Pediatric Extended Care Center (PPEC).
Senate Bill 492 previously passed out of the Senate Committee on Health and Human Services late last month.
"Prescribed Pediatric Extended Care Centers allow children with specialized medical needs to receive proper treatment in a child-friendly and developmentally-appropriate environment. Instead of being isolated at home or in a hospital, these children get to spend their days socializing with other children," Senator Lucio said last month.
Under Senate Bill 492, children would be eligible to attend a PPEC if they have a condition or disability that requires ongoing, technologically-based skilled nursing supervision, or requires the routine use of a medical device to compensate for a life-sustaining body function.
Children who would qualify to attend a PPEC are already eligible to receive private nursing care under the federal Medicaid program. Senate Bill 492 merely provides another resource at which parents may direct their Medicaid dollars. Parents would ultimately still choose what type of treatment works best for their child.
Now passed out of the Senate, Senate Bill 492 will be considered in the Texas House of Representatives.