SESSION UPDATE FROM DAWN – 5/23/21

May 23, 2021 As we head into the last week of the legislative session, members have passed a budget and are expected to adjourn a couple of days early, possibly on Wednesday. Our health care coalition was unsuccessful in getting the version of SB131 that would have halted managed care heard in the Senate. Although its members still disagree with managed care, the coalition reluctantly negotiated a new version that will place provider and patient protections into state law, should the governor sign it. The measure passed both floors this past week with authors Sen. McCortney and Rep. McEntire debating for along with Pro Tempore Treat. Should the governor veto the measure, there is a chance the legislature will override it. As long as legislators are in session, the governor has five days, not counting Sunday, from the time he receives it to sign or veto or it automatically becomes law. Contracts with the managed care companies will end June 30 so they will be renegotiated July 1. Thus, the provisions of SB131 could be included in the contracts. Meanwhile, the court has not ruled on the injunction filed by several provider groups and CMS has not granted the waiver for the implementation of managed care. Other measures of note:
  • SB658 – the last anti-vaccine, anti-mask measure is in conference and awaits a hearing on the Senate floor. The coalition continues to work against it.
  • SB516 – the bill that would have allowed doctors to supervise an unlimited number of PAs, is in conference, but the author has filed conferees unable to agree, which means no agreement was reached and keeps the bill alive for next session.
  • SB574 – instructs the Oklahoma Health Care Authority to create the Oklahoma State Health Information Network Exchange and a certification program for health information exchange systems. This measure has been sent to the governor for signature or veto.
We will keep you posted as we wrap up this last week! Thank you to all of you who responded to alerts this session and helped make your voices and the needs of your patients heard.  

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