Legislative Efforts

National Assembly on School-Based Health Centers (NASBHC) Legislative Update

August 1, 2011

Debt Ceiling Agreement

  • Leaders have agreed – President, Senate and House leaders.  Not rank-and-file.
  • Senate passage seems likely.  House is the question.  House is voting Monday night, first.
  • Trillions cut from federal spending, including a freeze on defense spending for next year
    • Ten-year discretionary spending cap – defense and nondefense
  • No revenue increases
  • Two parts, so debates will continue about cutting the debt (which could include tax increases). 
    • $900B increase in this calendar year ($400B now, $500B in the fall unless two-thirds of both Houses reject it); $1.2T increase next calendar year
    • Could be rejected, but only by a two-thirds vote in both Houses.
  • These figures — $900B and $1.2T – will be matched by spending cuts and by a combination of spending plus taxes, respectively
  • Programs for the poor, including Medicaid and Social Security, would be exempted. Medicare payments to providers (not beneficiaries) could be hit.
  • Next battle: Fiscal year ends on September 30 – government shutdown looms?
  • White House fact sheet: http://1.usa.gov/r2WRFA
  • More details: http://independentsector.org/word_on_washington
  1. Affordable Care Act: Preventative Services for Women
  • Institute of Medicine made recommendations for preventative services that should be available without co-pay.
    • Most prominent: birth control
  •  These are regulations on private insurance.  New health plans will need to include these services without cost sharing for insurance policies with plan years beginning on or after August 1, 2012.
    • well-woman visits;
    • screening for gestational diabetes;
    • human papillomavirus (HPV) DNA testing for women 30 years and older;
    • sexually-transmitted infection counseling;
    • human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) screening and counseling;
    • FDA-approved contraception methods and contraceptive counseling;
    • breastfeeding support, supplies, and counseling; and
    • domestic violence screening and counseling.
  • 60-day comment period
  • Religious institutions that offer insurance to their employees can exclude coverage of contraceptive services
  • News release: http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2011pres/08/20110801b.html
  1. Technical assistance call from last week for grant winners
  • 67 new/expanded school-based health center sites (construction projects)
  • 156 improved/upgraded school-based health center sites (alteration/renovation projects)
  • 189 equipment-only projects
  1. August 4 webinar: National Health Equity Coalition: The Impact of the Debt Ceiling Vote on Health Equity
  1. August 18-19 webinars: “Whole School Climate Improvement: A Framework for Stopping Bullying and Creating Safer Schools” by Community Matters’ Executive Director Rick Phillips
  • Best practices/strategies for improving school climate 
  • Increased understanding of the scope and nature of bullying
  • How to access a tool to save and recover the costs associated with bullying and mistreatment on campus
Thu, Aug 18, 2011 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM PDT
Fri, Aug 19, 2011 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM PDT
  1. APHA Public Health ACTion (PHACT) Campaign

For Federal legislative update click here

TASBHC Voices Support for RN’s in Schools

In many school districts across Texas, RN’s are being replaced by LVN’s in an effort to save money.  TASBHC supports the Texas School Nurses Organization in it’s position that a professional Registered Nurse is best suited to meet the responsibilities of school nursing. 

Click here for more information.

Texas Association of School-Based Health Centers
81st Legislative Session – 2009

HB 281:

On the 10th anniversary of legislation providing start-up funding for school-based health centers through the Department of State Health Services School Health Program under the Texas Education Code, Chapter 38 was successfully expanded.

  • Applicants were expanded beyond school districts to include: hospitals, local health departments, health care systems, universities and nonprofit organizations. This enables the collaborative medical partner to serve as the fiduciary agent without impacting Texas law requiring 65% of school budgets in direct classroom dollars.
  • Grant funding was increased from 3 to 5 years
  • Grant funding stabilized at $125,000 per year from decreasing amounts
  • Expanded grant to also include addition of new services or operating expenses for existing SBHCs
  • Changed DSHS reporting requirements to legislature from annual to biennial with measurable and population based outcomes reporting (e.g. absences for asthmatic and diabetic students managed in SBHC)
  • Continues to fund 2 SBHCs per year

A bipartisan bill passed unopposed n the House Public Education and Senate Education committees. Awaiting Governor Perry’s signature then will be enacted September 1, 2009.

HB 279:

Reinstates the Medicaid carve out for Texas SBHCs which establishes reimbursement under Medicaid for any billable services provided by a SBHC regardless of a student’s medical home. Currently, the SBHC must be the PCP or have referral/approval from the PCP prior to rendering any medical, dental or mental health services. Barriers to care and SBHC safety net provider function were critical to the passage of this bill through both the committees.

A bipartisan bill passed unopposed in the House Public Health and Senate Health and Human Services committees. It did not make it onto calendar the last 2 days of the session and Senate HHS Chair opposed amending it to HB281. Representative Anchia’s office has requested TASBHC’s help to implement these changes through the rule-making process with the Department of Health and Human Services in late June.