We hosted a May 22 event at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children where legislators, hospital executives, government affair leaders, business executives and private citizens networked and discussed state healthcare issues.
Many legislators sent key staff members to participate in the discussion. State Sen. Wendy Davis and State Rep. Jim Pitts were in attendance to offer key insight and answer our questions. Some admirable characteristics of Wendy and Jim were they listened intently, took notes and made earnest commitments to work for the good of Texas patients.
Hospitals have committed $155 billion in reimbursement reductions and hope coverage will be expanded to the uninsured as anticipated in the Affordable Care Act. We are waiting to see if the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in June will impact the coverage. We are also interested in the action U.S. Congress will take regarding sequestration and tax reductions expiring Dec. 31, 2012. These actions could impact Medicaid beneficiaries and Texas uninsured residents while potentially squeezing state budgets even more than today.
All stakeholders need to be part of the solution as we discuss and work together on the state budget and especially deficit problems. During the May 22 event, Wendy and Jim solicited advice, asked candid questions and stressed collaboration as we prepare for the 83rd session of the Texas Legislature beginning Jan. 8, 2013.
Did I mention Wendy is a Democrat and Jim a Republican? What a refreshing event where two legislative leaders searched for common ground, stressed collaboration with constructive dialogue and most importantly, stated patients are the top priority.
We thank our state legislators for their public service to the state. We know they work for the common good of the citizens of Texas. With their help, we can replicate during the 83rd Session in Austin what happened May 22 in Dallas – stakeholders working collaboratively on healthcare solutions for fellow Texans. It’s doing the right thing.