NAMI Texas Advocacy Alert: HB 595

We only have a few weeks left in this legislative session and one of the bills we support, HB 595, is up for a hearing on Tuesday in the Senate Health & Human Services Committee. The bill already passed the House and now we need to get it through committee on the Senate side. If passed, it would add protections for persons living with serious and persistent mental illness.

Please call or email the members of the Senate Health & Human Services Committee and ask for their support on HB 595. If you are in the Austin area and have a child on Medicaid (either adult or young kid), please considering testifying in support of the bill on Tuesday morning at 9 am in Senate HHS.

HB 595 would eliminate some of the confusion that would arise if there were multiple different Medicaid formularies for the various MCOs that manage the STAR plans around the state. Consumers who change plans would not have to face the potential of medications they are stable on not being available through the new plan, or not being available without the need for prior authorization, which can be time-consuming and a lengthy process with some plans for both the physician and the patient. The bill also maintains various patient protections on formulary issues. For anyone who has experienced the nightmares involved with Medicare Part D multiple formularies and ever-changing formularies, this is a bill we want to support in order to protect persons living with serious and persistent mental illness.

Senate Health and Human Services Committee members needing to be contacted:
bob.deuell@senate.state.tx.us Mesquite, Tx (512) 463-0102
joan.huffman@senate.state.tx.us Houston, Tx (512) 463-0117
robert.nichols@senate.state.tx.us Jacksonville , Tx (512) 463-0103
charles.schwertner@senate.state.tx.us Bryan , Tx (512) 463-0105
larry.taylor@senate.state.tx.us Galveston, Tx (512) 463-0111
carlos.uresti@senate.state.tx.us San Antonio, Tx (512) 463-0119
royce.west@senate.state.tx.us Dallas, Tx (512) 463-0123
judith.zaffirini@senate.state.tx.us Laredo, Tx (512) 463-0121

Thank you very much for making a difference in the lives of individuals affected by mental illness and their families. Please let me know if you have any questions, my email address is ghansch@namitexas.org

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