House Committee on Public Health - 77th R.S. (2001)
Assess the state of the healthcare infrastructure in Texas in light of hospital closures, rising costs, constrained reimbursement rates, workforce issues and any other pertinent factors. Consider differences in regions or localities that might adversely affect healthcare delivery to specific groups of Texans.
- Conduct an extensive review of access to programs and treatment options for mental illness and substance abuse. Identify barriers to access and any gaps in existing programs.
Examine the costs and benefits of allowing state and local governments to provide health and preventive care without regard to the immigration status of the patient.
Gather information about the production, distribution, use and disposal of biological agents that could be used in terrorist actions, as well as vaccines that would be used to respond to biological attacks. Review hospital plans for responding to large-scale emergencies. Review government regulations and business practices to determine whether legislation is needed to protect life and property and to detect, interdict and respond to acts of terrorism.
Study the use of complementary and alternative medicines in Texas. Is there a need for the state to develop a regulatory framework for their use?
Assess the procedures of health-related licensing agencies regarding the intake of complaints, investigation procedures and timetables, and enforcement of laws and rules. Comment on any factors involving the use or abuse of patient information by healthcare agencies or institutions.
Actively monitor agencies and programs under the committee's oversight jurisdiction. Pay particular attention to implementation of recommendations to restructure the Department of Health including the childhood immunization program; and implementation of pharmaceutical legislation passed by the 77th Legislature.
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