State legislative update – committee deadline passes

Posted on: 3/7/18


Thursday, March 1, was the deadline for bills to be reported from committee in their house of introduction. Almost two-thirds of the bills introduced in the 2017 and 2018 sessions were eliminated by Thursday’s deadline. For a listing of important legislation with OHA positions, click here.
 
Lawmakers filed 1,953 bills by the Jan. 18 deadline to pre-file legislation for consideration during the 2018 regular session. Approximately 1,990 were carried over from the 2017 regular session. After Thursday’s deadline, 1,120 remain alive, including:
  • 533 House bills;
  • 11 House joint resolutions;
  • 561 Senate bills; and
  • 15 Senate joint resolutions.
Medical school funding approved
HB 1022XX, David/Wallace, appropriates $31.8 million for FY2018, the current fiscal year, and $110.0 million for FY2019 to the Oklahoma Health Care Authority to pay costs associated with the state’s medical school programs. The funds are to be distributed to Oklahoma State University and the University of Oklahoma for the benefit of the Deans Graduate Medical Education Program, in the same ratio as such funds were provided for such purpose by the Oklahoma Health Care Authority in fiscal year 2017. The appropriation became necessary after a federal audit found the state did not have a waiver in place to use Medicaid funds for its medical schools. Status: Signed by governor, March 5.

OHA and health care provider coalition kill outsourcing Medicaid bill

SB 1331 died in the Senate Appropriations Committee (19 Yes – 23 No) last week after OHA members urgently contacted senators expressing their “opposition.”  Late in the day, Sen. Kim David offered an amendment to attempt to appease OHA in the concerns expressed to senators about the future of SHOPP related to its potential use for managed care. OHA told Sen. David that we could not agree to the amendment without more analysis and consultation with the OHA board.

At this writing, there are several other bills that could “outsource Medicaid.” To view an OHA Action Alert sent last week that includes these bills, click here.

The bill that died, SB 1331, David/Mulready, states it is the intent of the Legislature that the Office of Management and Enterprise Services initiate a request for proposal to transform the state’s Medicaid program from a traditional fee-for-service system into a system that provides budget predictability for the taxpayers of this state while ensuring quality care to those in need. It establishes goals for the program.

OHA opposes bills removing authority of state health boards
SB 1248, David, died in the Senate Committee on Health & Human Services last week. It would have provided for the governor to appoint the commissioner of mental health and substance abuse services, the commissioner of health and the director of the Oklahoma Health Care Authority by removing the authority of the agency boards to hire and remove the agency directors. OHA is opposed to any measure that makes health boards advisory or repeals the board and permits the governor to hire and fire agency directors. In the case of the Oklahoma Health Care Authority, the next governor could direct that director to issue a request for proposal to outsource Medicaid without any input from the legislator or providers.

To view OHA talking points on this issue, click here.

Similar bills passed the House Committee on Rules last week. With minimal discussion and no debate, the committee advanced several bills Tuesday that would transfer the appointment power for several key agency leaders from the agencies’ boards to the governor.

The bills provide for the governor to be given the authority to appoint the commissioner, director or executive director of the agency. Qualifications for each respective agency board would remain unchanged, but each board would be moved to an advisory body status. The effective date on all of them would be Jan. 14, 2019, the same day Oklahoma’s next governor will take office. Bills related to the health agencies include HB 2822, Echols, Commissioner of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services; HB 2934, Mulready, Oklahoma Health Care Authority; and, HB 3036, Lepak, Board of Health (Lynne White)

OHA Data Solutions 


Introducing a new initiative to improve the quality and timeliness of inpatient and outpatient encounter data available to hospitals in Oklahoma.

Learn More »

OHA Data Solutions 


Introducing a new initiative to improve the quality and timeliness of inpatient and outpatient encounter data available to hospitals in Oklahoma.

Learn More »