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HCFA’s 2017-2018 Priority Legislation

HCFA’s 2017-2018 Priority Legislation

January 25, 2017

With the launch of a new legislative session, we at HCFA are excited to announce a new legislative agenda that advocates for a more effective and consumer friendly health care system here in the Bay State.

HCFA worked with a diverse group of legislators in both the House and Senate to file a broad package of legislation. You can see a 2-page brief summary of each of our priority bills here.  The proposed legislation includes the following proposals:

  • Reduce Out-Of-Pocket Health Care Costs by eliminating cost-sharing for high-value services and drugs such as insulin, asthma inhalers, and hypertension medications.    

  • Preserve Affordable Health Coverage by ensuring that premiums and cost-sharing remain affordable for individuals who receive subsidies to purchase health insurance through the Health Connector.

  • Enhance Confidentiality in Medical Care and ensure that when multiple people are on the same insurance plan, confidential health care information is not shared with anyone other than the patient.

  • Improve the Children’s Medical Security Program by eliminating limits on services and allowing MassHealth to directly administer the program.

  • Ensure Continued Coverage for Children by keeping the state's Children’s Health Insurance Program intact regardless of federal decisions.

  • Increase Access to Children’s Mental Health Services by requiring coverage for community and home-based behavioral health care services for children and adolescents with mental health disorders who are covered by commercial insurance.

  • Expand Access to Dental Care in Massachusetts through the authorization of a new type of midlevel dental professional, the dental hygiene practitioner. 

  • Restore MassHealth Dental Benefits that were cut several years ago, affecting over 800,000 individuals, including 120,000 seniors and 180,000 people with disabilities who do not get adequate dental care.

  • Ensure Accuracy of Health Plan Provider Directories by requiring health plans to meet reporting and transparency standards and reduce barriers to accessing out-of-network care when plans lack appropriate in-network providers.

  • Increase Prescription Drug Cost Transparency so that the public can learn what drugs really cost to manufacture, how much people in other countries pay, the true price charged for the drug in Massachusetts, and the research and advertising costs for the most expensive drugs.

  • Ensure Provider Access to Unbiased Information about Prescription Drugs to deliver unbiased information to prescribers regarding prescription drugs and other therapeutically equivalent alternatives for potential use by their patients.

HCFA is asking constituents to call their legislators and ask them to cosponsor any of all of those bills.