ISSUE 1. Florida is ahead of the nation in providing patient protections. Those protections
are, however, scattered throughout the statutes. The "Patient Protection
Act of 2000" guarantees existing patient protections by solidifying into
one clear, concise, consumer-friendly format.
ISSUE 2. Consumer awareness will also be
enhanced by a new requirement that, as part of their HMO contract, physicians and
hospitals must post a notice of the toll-free telephone number where assistance is
available in case they have a complaint against their health maintenance organization.
ISSUE 3. The review process for introduction of
new health care services is streamlined and certain projects are exempted - beginning the
phase out of the certificate of need review process.
ISSUE 4. The current annual 1.5% assessment on
each hospital's net operating revenues attributable to outpatient services and on the net
operating revenues of ambulatory surgical centers, clinical laboratories, and diagnostic
imaging centers is eliminated. The expenditure cap imposed annually on Medicaid payments
for hospital outpatient services provided to adults is increased from $1,000 to $1,500.
ISSUE 5. HMO contracts will be prevented from
prohibiting or restricting a physician from providing inpatient services in a contracted
hospital if the HMO determines the services are "medically necessary." Patients
will be able to have their own doctor continue to treat them in the hospital.
ISSUE 6. An assessment (including, but not
limited to, the cost and benefit) of the impact of current mandated health coverages will
be required. Data will be gathered to enable informed decisions as to the advisability of
mandating certain health benefits.
ISSUE 7. Adverse determinations will be required
to be made by a licensed physician who is active and in good standing. No longer will HMO
administrators be allowed to deny care.
ISSUE 8. Racial and ethnic health outcome
disparities will be reduced through a grant program administered by the Department of
ISSUE 9. A comprehensive statewide strategy will
be developed for improving health care delivery systems through meaningful reporting
standards, data collection and review, and quality measurement. The focus will be on
quality improvement and preventing medical errors in the first place.
ISSUES 10. and 11. Small employer health
insurance reforms are encouraged through authorizing carriers to issue group policies to
small employer health alliances organized as not-for-profit entities and by revising the
"modified community rating" method.
ISSUE 12. A number
of different Medicaid topics are addressed including budget issues, Medicaid
fraud issues, Medicaid certified school match program and Medicaid eligibility.