The Indiana General Assembly reconvenes on Monday, January 7. After summer study committees and keeping our ear to the ground, the IAFP has a good idea of what to expect in 2013 from our legislature.
As 2013 is a long session, the legislature is mandated to pass a two-year budget by April 29th. In the budget the IAFP will be paying close attention to the medical education board funding, which provides the state’s family medicine residencies with extra funding. INSPECT, Indiana’s prescription drug monitoring program will come to the end of its federal grant funding in 2014. The funding for maintaining INSPECT must now come from the state and be included in budget written this spring. The IAFP has been active on the Attorney General’s Prescription Drug Abuse Taskforce, which is working to maintain and improve the INSPECT program.
One of the biggest questions is whether or not Indiana will expand Medicaid to 133% of the federal poverty level. While the IAFP has not heard an outright “no” from legislative leadership or the governor, the cost for Indiana to run a larger Medicaid program is estimated by Milliman, Inc. to be $161 million in 2014 and $257 million in 2015 (these numbers assume 100% enrollment of eligible individuals), which automatically gives legislators pause.
In scope of practice issues we have heard that lay midwifery licensure may be on the table again, and we anticipate an even stronger push for direct access to physical therapists.
We know Chairman Tim Brown has filed another Physician Order of Scope of Treatment (POST) bill, like he did in 2012. This legislation would create a form that is valid in all settings to express a patient’s end of life treatment choices. And 2013 will likely be the fifth year we see legislation introduced to make pseudoephedrine a prescription only medicine.
In mid January the IAFP Commission on Legislation and Governmental Affairs will take an official position on each of the health related bills introduced at the legislature in 2013. If you are interested in becoming involved with the Commission on Legislation and Governmental Affairs, please call 317.237.4237.
IAFP members can check our e-FrontLine newsletter for updates from the IAFP on the progress of legislation through the General Assembly over the next four months.