THA’s Session in Review: 2023 Outcomes for Texas Hospitals

THA’s new end-of-session report takes stock of health care legislation – from the helpful to the hurtful – that impacted Texas hospitals during the Texas 88th legislative session.

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For 140 days, the Texas Hospital Association spoke out, dug in and fought – for good health care policy in Texas, and to short-circuit policies that would have impeded access to care and jeopardize many hospitals’ very existence.

After walking miles of Capitol corridors, and hours upon hours of meetings, negotiations and bill-watching, the 2023 regular session of the Texas Legislature was another successful one for THA and its members, as detailed in THA’s newest end-of-session report, Health Care and the 88th Texas Legislature: Outcomes for Texas Hospitals.

In the end-of-session report, you’ll learn more about THA’s victories during this session, including:

  • Key workforce wins, including extensive gains in health care workforce funding, and bills that mandate annual workplace violence training at all health care facilities and enhance the penalty for assaulting a hospital worker to a third-degree felony;
  • Other crucial funding wins in the state budget for 2024-25, including full funding of Medicaid and increases that will aid behavioral health care and rural and maternal care, such as a tripling of the current Medicaid add-on payment for rural labor and delivery;
  • Expanded Medicaid coverage, in the form of an extension for postpartum coverage for new mothers from two months of continuous coverage to 12 months;
  • Allowing hospitals to continue the successful federal hospital-at-home program that helped contain surges during the COVID-19 pandemic; and
  • A landmark change to the state’s advance directive law, the result of eight months of stakeholder negotiations.

Just as important, however, was THA’s successful pushback against a wide-ranging attack on hospitals that would have severely jeopardized many Texans’ ability to receive care – and, at the same time, forced already-struggling hospitals and clinics into further financial hardship or closure. The report details THA’s victorious fights against legislation to ban hospital outpatient payments and institute government rate-setting.

The report also contains THA President/CEO John Hawkins’ impressions of what just transpired in Austin, and lets THA’s members know what they can do going forward on the rhetorical fronts that will shape the climate of the Legislature’s 2025 session.

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