HBA-DMH C.S.H.B. 2700 77(R) BILL ANALYSIS Office of House Bill AnalysisC.S.H.B. 2700 By: Chavez Public Health 4/3/2001 Committee Report (Substituted) BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE Texas faces unique challenges within its health care system. Texas has experienced a large population increase in the last decade, including an increase in the Hispanic population. Rural border areas are typical medically underserved and tend to have lower Medicaid reimbursement rates. C.S.H.B. 2700 requires the Health and Human Services Commission to establish telemedicine pilot programs in such areas to enhance health care services and provides for reimbursement and regulation of telemedicine services. RULEMAKING AUTHORITY It is the opinion of the Office of House Bill Analysis that this bill does not expressly delegate any additional rulemaking authority to a state officer, department, agency, or institution. ANALYSIS C.S.H.B. 2700 amends the Government Code to require the Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) to establish pilot programs in designated areas under which HHSC, in administering governmentfunded health programs, may reimburse a health care professional participating in the pilot program for telemedicine medical services. The bill provides that each pilot program established before January 1, 2003, must be operated in areas that are not more than 150 miles from the Texas-Mexico border. In developing and operating a pilot program, the bill requires HHSC to: _solicit and obtain support for the program from local officials and the medical community; _focus on enhancing health outcomes in the area served by the pilot program through increased access to medical services; _establish quantifiable measures and expected health outcomes for each authorized telemedicine medical service; _consider condition-specific applications of telemedicine medical services; and _not adversely affect the provision of traditional medical services within the area served by the pilot program. The bill requires the commissioner of health and human services (commissioner) to establish an advisory committee, not later than December 31, 2001, to assist HHSC in certain telemedicine-related issues. The bill sets forth provisions for the composition of the advisory committee, and provides that members of the advisory committee serve at the will of the commissioner. The bill requires the advisory committee to prepare a report, not later than September 1, 2003, relating to the implementation of the pilot programs, and provide the report to the governor, lieutenant governor, speaker of the house of representatives, and appropriate standing committees of the senate and house. The bill repeals law requiring the commissioner to establish an advisory committee to assist HHSC in developing policies for reimbursement for telemedical consultations, and abolishes the existing advisory committee on the effective date of this Act. H.B. 2700 amends the Utilities Code to set forth that a health care facility providing telemedicine medical services and participating in a pilot program is eligible to receive a grant from the telecommunications infrastructure fund grant and loan program. EFFECTIVE DATE On passage, or if the Act does not receive the necessary vote, the Act takes effect September 1, 2001. COMPARISON OF ORIGINAL TO SUBSTITUTE C.S.H.B. 2700 differs from the original bill by specifying law is being repealed from the Government Code in SECTION 3.