Physician Advocacy

  • TMA Makes Strong Push for Fair Surprise Billing Legislation

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    TMA is urging Texas lawmakers in Washington, D.C., to show their support for federal legislation on surprise medical bills that includes commercially reasonable upfront payments and independent arbitration.

    Health Care Billing Shouldn't Favor Big Insurance  
  • Medicine Pushes State Lawmakers For Stronger Policies to Curb Teen Vaping

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    With the recent rise in severe pulmonary illness linked to vaping and e-cigarettes, state lawmakers took steps today to curb use of those products, particularly among children and teenagers.

    Doctors Ask Lawmakers to Protect Teens From Vaping  
  • House Will Study Behavioral Health, Early Childhood Intervention, and More

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    Among a number of health care-related topics, the Texas House of Representatives during the interim “off” year in 2020 will study the state’s behavioral health system, child trafficking prevention, and the effect of technology and “big data” on insurance. House Speaker Dennis Bonnen (R-Angleton) recently released the chamber’s interim charges.

    Read More Issues Here  
  • Health Care Takes Center Stage One Year Out From 2020 Election

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    One year from now, Texas voters will hit the polls. They’ll be voting for president, for Congress, and for seats in the Texas Legislature. At the state and national levels, health coverage, Medicaid access, and prescription drug costs have gotten plenty of attention already, and they’ll get plenty more between now and the closing of the polls on Nov. 3, 2020. Here’s a look at some of the major health care debates taking center stage during the 2020 election cycle, what voters are and will be hearing about, and what TMA policy says on those particular issues.

    Big Noises Big Issues  
  • Senate Committees Will Examine Uninsured Rate During Interim Year

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    Texas’ nation-leading uninsured rate will be under the state senate’s microscope in 2020 as part of the interim charges Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick has assigned to senate committees.

    More Details Here  
  • Texas Voters Approve Renewed Funding for Cancer Research

     

    Voters statewide overwhelmingly approved Proposition 6 on Tuesday to continue funding for the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT), the state's cancer-fighting agency.

    Texas' Ongoing Battle Against Cancer Just Got New Life  
  • Rule of Fear

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    A reversal in federal immigration policy limits access to green cards and temporary visas for some immigrants who receive Medicaid and other public benefits. But widespread and unfounded fears about the law have unnecessarily deterred many migrants from the care they need and are eligible for. Now physicians and other advocates are struggling to undo the repercussions.

    Read the Public Health story in Texas Medicine.

    New Immigration Rule Instills Fear, Deters Care  

  • Texas’ Rise in Uninsured Kids Among Fastest in Nation, Report Says

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    The bad news keeps coming for Texas’ uninsured rate. Between 2016 and 2018, Texas tied for the second-highest jump in the rate of uninsured children among all 50 states, according to a study released Wednesday by Georgetown University's Center for Children and Families in Washington, D.C.

    No Other State Is
    Even in Double Digits
     
  • TMA to Trump: Do Not Expand NPPs’ Scope of Practice

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    When President Donald Trump released an executive order earlier this month that would, in part, expand the scope of practice of nonphysician practitioners, the Texas Medical Association vowed to keep physicians at the head of the health care team. On Monday, TMA President David Fleeger, MD, took a major step to do that, urging President Trump and Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar to remove that language entirely.

    More on TMA's Concerns  
  • Medicine to Congress: Don’t Give Health Plans More Leverage In Surprise-Billing Law

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    The federal government should take a balanced approach to surprise medical bills that includes commercially reasonable upfront payments and independent arbitration, the Texas Medical Association and many other medical societies are telling key members of Congress.

    Support the Protecting People From Surprise Medical Bills Act  
  • Fix Medicare Now, TMA Tells Feds

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    Unless the federal government increases physicians’ Medicare payments and overhauls Medicare’s hassle-laden Quality Payment Program (QPP), access to health care for millions of American seniors and people with disabilities “is at risk,” the Texas Medical Association told Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Seema Verma.

    More on This Unsustainable Trend  
  • CRNAs Can’t Administer Anesthesia Unless Physician Delegates

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    The state attorney general has agreed with the Texas Medical Association in an official opinion that keeps certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs) from administering anesthesia without physician delegation.

    Read the Attorney
    General's Opinion
     
  • We Need to Come in Force: Physician-Lawmakers Look Ahead to 2021

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    A panel of medicine’s representatives in the Texas Legislature said Saturday that 2019 was a good year for medicine in Austin, but unfinished business remains for the next session in 2021.

    Issues That Will be Top of Mind Next Session  
  • The 2019 Border Health Conference Was a Terrific Success

    BorderThe 14th annual Border Health Conference, sponsored by the Texas Medical Association and the Border Health Caucus, convened in Laredo, TX, earlier this week. The conference, packed with thoughtful and detailed information, included nearly 100 medical professionals and subject matter experts discussing health care trends and challenges in all communities along the binational border between Texas and Mexico, and various methods of addressing and solving those challenges.

    We thank our speakers, sponsors, and attendees for participating. Speaker presentations can be accessed here.

    Don’t forget to follow the Border Health Caucus on social media for year-round updates on activities and opportunities to participate. And look for information early next summer on the 2020 Border Health Conference.

  • Charting Medicine's Statehouse Progress

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    Physicians checked off major accomplishments during the 2019 session of the Texas Legislature, including finally convincing lawmakers that raising the age to purchase tobacco to 21 was the right thing for the state's present and future. Medicine also scored improvements on the insurance front and vital funding increases.

    Successful Wins on Tobacco, Prior Authorization, and More  
  • TMA’s Top 10 Victories This Legislative Session

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    TMA scored on a wide range of goals to improve the state’s medical landscape during this year’s session of the Texas Legislature, which concluded in May.

    What You Need to Know About Medicine's Legislative Victories  
  • Legislative Hotline: Governor Signs Key Prior Authorization Bill

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    The work of the 86th Texas Legislature passed its final stage at midnight Sunday, the deadline for Gov. Greg Abbott to to sign, veto, or allow bills to become law without his signature. Among those he signed this weekend was Senate Bill 1742, which requires greater transparency with prior authorizations and mandates that utilization reviews be conducted by a Texas-licensed physician in the same or similar specialty as the physician requesting the service or procedure. It also requires health plan directories to clearly identify which physician specialties are in-network at network facilities.

    Under the Rotunda  
  • Legislative Top 10: What It Took To Renew the TMB for 12 Years

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    “Seems like the last two sessions it’s been sort of ‘Groundhog Day.’” The movie reference is how TMA Vice President of Advocacy Darren Whitehurst summed up lawmakers’ quest to pass legislation to renew the Texas Medical Board for another 12 years.

    Check Out the Video
    for More Details
     
  • Action Alerts

    Respond to Action Alerts. Some bills will be particularly important to TMA, and we request your assistance in either supporting or opposing those bills. Through our Grassroots Action Center and mobile app, VoterVoice, you’ll be able to respond on the fly, sending a message directly to your legislator.

    Get the App

     
  • Healthy Vision 2025

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    The 2019 Texas Legislature is now in session — and TMA is ready to fight for medicine. See our plan to help Texas physicians put the health back into health care. 

    See TMA's Legislative Priorities for the 2019 Session   
  • TMA is helping to strengthen your practice by offering advice and creating a climate of medical success across the state. 

  • What could a TMA membership mean for you, your practice, and your patients?

  • Physician Advocacy Articles

    Bill Will Protect Physicians in True Emergencies

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    Landmark reforms passed in 2003 reversed soaring liability insurance rates and helped recruit desperately needed physicians to Texas, especially obstetrician-gynecologists, neurosurgeons, and emergency physicians.

    Protect Liability Reform
  • ACA Ruling An Opportunity to Improve Health Care Access

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    The Texas Medical Association believes a Texas federal judge’s recent ruling that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is unconstitutional provides a bipartisan pathway to strengthen access to health care and provide coverage for the 4.5 million Texans without health care coverage.

    Find Out What's Next