A Healthy Blog

Massachusetts health care — wonky, with a healthy dose of reality

Lookin' Ahead

Lookin' Ahead

April 12, 2005

Tomorrow, the Mass. House Ways and Means Committee releases its budget proposal for state fiscal year 2006 starting July 1. The House debate will occur during the week of April 25. Senate Ways and Means is expected to release its plan in early May with debate during the 2nd or 3rd week of May. We're not expecting to see cuts in health access programs -- key will be the extent to which either branch will restore some of the cuts from prior years or undertake any access improvements for key health issues such as MassHealth Essential, legal immigrants, or adult dental coverage. We're still waiting for any word on the scheduling for hearings on the health reform plans now before the Legislature: Governor Romney's, Senate President Travaglini's, or the Moore Blumer Health Access and Affordability Act. There's also the possibility that Gov. Romney's bill will be referred to a different committee than the other two, creating some early confusion about who's on first in the Legislature's review. Lots and lots going on between now and the end of July when everyone can take a breather.