Stories with related Professional Interests

82nd Texas Legislature Testimonies and Letters - 04/11/2019

TMA already is hard at work guiding health care policy through the Texas Legislature. Since February, House and Senate committee chairs have held interim hearings on budget cuts, controlling health care costs, expansion of scope, and a myriad of public health issues. At each hearing, TMA has had a physician leader present to ensure legislators understood our position and acted in the best interest of patients. We also have submitted several letters to Governor Perry, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, and House Speaker Joe Strauss.


81st Texas Legislature Testimonies - 04/27/2018

81st Texas Legislature Testimonies


Transparency in Out-of-Network Payments Needed - 04/27/2018

Since the health plan’s contract or agreement is with the enrollee, we hope health plans don’t use the same argument, saying, “It’s proprietary” to circumvent the spirit of this legislation when their own enrollees make the same inquiry about the out-of-network payment methodology.


Doctor’s Orders: TMA's Prescription for a Healthy Texas - 04/26/2018

TMA's legislative agenda for the 81st Texas Legislative session.


Texas Law: Health Care Worker Vaccination and Patient Safety - 04/26/2018

TMA worked closely with the Texas Pediatric Society, and the Texas Nurses Association and the Texas Hospital Association to support the legislation which goes into effect on September 1, 2012.The legislation requires each health care facility that is licensed by the Texas Department of State Health Services, to have a policy that identifies the requirements for vaccination for each employee or anyone that comes into contact with patients in their facility. This includes physicians, volunteers, or others that are not directly employed by a facility.


TMA Supports Privacy Law Clarification on Training Requirements - 04/26/2018

The 2011 Texas Legislature passed House Bill 300, with TMA’s support. We recognize the leadership of Chair Nelson, who has been involved with every privacy bill this state has passed, including House Bill 300 sponsored by the chair of House Public Health Committee, Rep. Lois Kolkhorst. HB 300 further strengthened the state law protecting the privacy of Texans’ medical records. That law, however, unintentionally created some questions for physician practices in their attempt to comply fully with the new training requirements.


TMA Testimony: HB 574, ImmTrac Opt-Out Registry by Dr. Terk - 04/26/2018

Moving to an opt-out system of consent will mean that providers can advise families that their information will be entered into ImmTrac unless they specifically opt-out of the system.  This means that we would only have to process and document a small subset of the population which declines to consent—between 5 and 10% of the patients, as opposed to the opt-in system where we must gather and document consent on 90 to 95% of the children we serve.  The lifting of the administrative burdens under an opt-out system would free up staff time for more appropriate patient-care activities, and would ensure that we more efficiently document immunizations to support the public health infrastructure in Texas. 


Dr. Swift Advocates for Red Tape Reduction - 04/17/2018

SB 166 is a win-win for Texas’ patients and the physicians who care for them. If passed, this legislation will reduce red tape, increase efficiency, and improve the accuracy of patient information entered into the patient’s medical record.


Lobbying Tips - 02/06/2018

The involvement of physicians, medical students and alliance members is vital to the success of TMA’s grassroots lobbying efforts. A vital asset to TMA’s professional lobbying team, only you can give your state legislators the most accurate picture about how the issues really affect the practice of medicine and the patients of Texas. TMA offers some tips for lobbying your legislator on the issues of importance to you.


Delegating and Supervising Prescribing Privileges for APRNs/PAs - 09/27/2017

New state law governing the delegation and supervision of prescribing privileges for advanced practice registered nurses and physician assistants went into effect Nov. 1.  


Patient/Physician Relationship Needed in Telemedicine - 10/19/2016

TMA supports current telemedicine medical services law.


TALA: Texans Like Tort Reform - 06/22/2016

Texans Against Lawsuit Abuse (TALA) says its survey of voters shows that Texans won't take kindly to efforts to undo the state's tort reforms. A TALA news release says a majority of Texas voters "believe that legal reforms have helped increase access to health care, injected fairness in our courts, and helped attract businesses and jobs to the Lone Star State."


Summary of Texas Medical Professional Liability Law - 06/22/2016

In the spring of 1977, the Texas legislature passed the Medical Liability and Insurance Improvement Act (MLIIA), which was codified as Article 4590i of the Texas Revised Civil Statutes. The MLIIA was intended to respond to the perceived crisis in medical malpractice insurance during that period. Article 4590i introduced several significant changes in the law, including: pre-suit notification, expert reports early in the litigation process, caps on damages and a 2-year statute of limitations. In the intervening decades, parts of the statute have been declared unconstitutional and other parts have been judicially refined. In 2003 the Texas Legislature made significant changes to MLIAA and re-codified it in the Civil Practice and Remedies Code. This article is a brief summary of the significant sections of the law concerning medical professional liability in Texas.


Physicians and Surgeons Professional Liability Insurers - 06/22/2016

Physicians and Surgeons Professional Liability Insurers in Texas


2011 TMA Legislative Report Card - 06/22/2016

TMA's top priority as the 2011 legislative session convened was to protect the patient-physician relationship in every aspect of the health care system. With an enormous budget deficit and special interest groups from hospitals to midlevel practitioners lining up to takeMany of our adversaries wanted control of physicians, our practices, and our patients. However, when the session, physicians crossed the finish line with the reins still in hand. Even better, lawmakers took major steps to protect and strengthen the patient-physician relationship from future outside interference.


West Nile Virus Prevention - 06/20/2016

Texas physicians know the dangers of West Nile virus (WNV). Many of us have treated patients with the disease – some of us have even contacted the virus. We believe SB 186 would take an important and needed step to help local public health officials prevent WNV outbreaks by reducing barriers that prevent effective spraying. It allows officials to inspect, investigate, and spray properties that are abandoned or uninhabited. This action would reduce the need for much more costly aerial spraying if WNV appears again this summer.


House Public Health Panel Discussion on Public Health Spending - 06/17/2016

Healthy Vision calls on government and hospitals and insurance companies to respect the patient-physician relationship, to respect the trust our patients place in us to guide them to the best decisions regarding their own, individual health care and more.


TMA Testimony: Fitnessgram - 06/17/2016

The state of Texas is suffering from an obesity epidemic, which is most glaring among our youth. Obesity usually begins in childhood. Obese children have an 80-percent chance of staying obese their entire lives. The average lifetime cost of obesity is more than half a million dollars for an obese child who remains obese throughout adulthood. In Texas, the numbers are staggering. Forty percent of children are either overweight or obese.  Fitnessgram, a physical education assessment and reporting program required under current law for children in grades 3 through 12, measures a child’s aerobic capacity, muscular strength, muscular endurance, flexibility and body composition.  SB 226 seeks to enhance this data by requiring school districts to provide the results of individual student performance without identifiers such as a student’s name, social security number or date of birth.  The data is currently reported in aggregate form.


HB 400 Vote NO for Fat Amendments - 06/17/2016

Support Healthy Texas Children by Voting NO on Amendments that Repeal School-based Fitness Measurements and Coordinated School Health Education.


TMA Testimony: HB 3336 Pertussis Education for New Moms - 06/16/2016

Texas physicians are on the front lines of preventing and treating infectious diseases, including pertussis. We firmly believe that informing mothers and families in a hospital setting is an effective way to make sure families know they can protect their newborns from pertussis. HB 3336 provides an efficient way to share information. And it fits in well with the postpartum education system already required in state statute. Hospitals are well-positioned to deliver this information before a mother is discharged from the hospital.


Good Faith Price Estimates Hinge on Health Insurers - 06/13/2016

As you have heard in earlier testimony presented on behalf of TMA, the requirement for the provision of a good-faith estimate by a physician or health care provider about the actual expected payments hinges on the ability to obtain that information from health plans. This committee substitute has no such requirement.


Dr. Buckingham Supports Legislation to Regulate Silent PPOs - 06/13/2016

This legislation would put into place a much-needed law to regulate companies or networks that sell, lease, or share physician discounts without the physician’s knowledge or consent.


Appeal Your Rankings: TMA Tells You How - 06/13/2016

If a health plan rates you for one of its physician ranking or tiering programs based on cost or quality of care, you don't have to take the results lying down. But you do need to act within 30 days of receiving your preliminary ranking results from the health plan.


Armstrong to Legislature: Fight Cancer - 05/21/2016

LIVESTRONG founder Lance Armstrong is urging the Texas Legislature to make the state "a leader in the fight against cancer."


When Corporations Play Doctor - 05/21/2016

Why did the owners of a residential treatment center try to stop a doctor from reporting a child sex scandal to authorities? Why did they fire her when she did report it? Linda Adair, MD, tells her story