Legislative Update 3/18/19
On Thursday the Senate passed SB 308, Senator Cindy Rosenwald’s comprehensive legislation to strengthen New Hampshire’s healthcare workforce. As you know, this bill is strongly supported by NHNPA. The most significant portions of the bill undoubtedly are the sections that deal with the financial aspects of the issue, including rate increases for Medicaid providers and loan repayment. The bill now goes over to the Senate Finance Committee for further review, and it will be back on the Senate floor for a final vote at some point in the next couple of weeks.
The Senate on Thursday also passed SB 228, a bill to allow for the creation of association health plans in New Hampshire (the theory behind this is that entities like Chambers of Commerce might aggregate businesses together and constitute a large group for health insurance purposes). One of the things that this legislation does is to set up a commission to study the status of health coverage markets for individuals and small employers. Under the version passed by the Senate Commerce Committee, one of the members of this commission would have been a nurse practitioner appointed by NHNPA, a physician appointed by NHMS, and other health care providers. But the amendment that passed on the Senate floor last night removed all of the health care providers from the Commission and so the remaining members are generally from the insurance or consumer side.