TMA Testifies: Dr. Austin “on” HB 1809

Testimony: HB 1809 Senfronia Thompson (D-Houston)

House Licensing/Admin Procedures

By: Sara Austin MD   

Mister Chairman, members, I am Doctor Sara Austin. I am a neurologist here in Austin and a member of the Texas Medical Association Council on Legislation. On behalf of the TMA and our members, I am testifying ON House Bill 1809 by Representative Thompson.

We have physician members on both sides of this issue, but I do wish to acknowledge that we have concerns about the bill.

Primarily, the bill would establish a registration and accrediting process for imaging centers and facilities at an unknown expense. At the very same time, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services already approved accreditation standards that must be met by all imaging providers, effective January 1, 2012.

We have some concern that we may be establishing at best, a duplication of effort in registration and accreditation. At worst, we may be setting up a scenario for conflicting standards. Either way, the costs of compliance will increase and those costs will be passed along to insurers and, ultimately, to individuals through higher insurance premiums.

At the same time, we know that while there has been a significant increase in imaging services, we do know that imaging, particularly MRI studies, generally must meet each plan’s pre-authorization standards related to medical necessity.

We respect the opinions that have been expressed on this bill and we ask the committee to carefully weigh the potential for both the duplication of effort and the potential for the development of conflicting processes.

82nd Texas Legislature Testimonies    

     

  


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