At the onset of the coronavirus, Governor Abbott began taking steps to reduce regulatory burdens on patients and medical providers. These actions were intended to ensure Texans could quickly, efficiently, and affordably receive the care they needed. As doctors and patients began to adjust and enjoy a new and freer way of interacting, the question became, “if these regulations prevented patients from receiving care quickly and affordability, why were they there in the first place?”
To that same end, the Texas Public Policy Foundation suggests additional reductions to our regulatory system to ensure patients have better access to care:
Remove regulations that prevent a doctor from directly dispensing medication to patients so they can safely, affordably, and more easily get the drugs they need. Physician dispense would be a voluntary program physicians can opt into that would allow their patients easier access certain medications, thus allowing for their continuous health care management.
Eliminate all restrictions that were suspended to encourage the use of telemedicine. Telemedicine offers a convenient and safe alternative to traveling long distances to see a doctor.
Waive restrictions that prohibit direct primary care options from being offered to Texas’ Medicaid population. When considering the incredulous cost of funding a single Medicaid beneficiary, allowing direct primary care into Texas’ fee-for-service Medicaid population can allow savings for the state while increasing beneficiary access to primary care.
Allow medical cost sharing agreements to operate freely without being regulated as “insurance.” Much like Christian sharing ministries, which are already safe harbored from TDI regulation, medical cost sharing agreements should operate freely without fear of an “insurance” label, allowing them to fund access to health care for those individuals that chose to be a member.
Allow out-of-state licensed physicians reciprocity to practice in Texas. Texas already has more than 20 health care license reciprocity laws that allow for an increase in providers which ultimately benefits Texas patients. By allowing out of state physicians to practice in Texas, as more individuals are moving in the state, there can be an increase in access.
- Repeal certain regulations which are ineffective or unnecessary to the health and safety of the public.