Ohio Legislative Update
The 134th General Assembly is well underway, as well as monitoring new initiatives as they progress through the legislative process.
Here are the major legislative items we are working on so far:
1. HB 153 – Non-Medical Switching
Also reintroduced from the prior general assembly, HB 153 would place restrictions on removing a medication from a prescription drug formulary during a plan year (would apply to both private plans and Medicaid). This legislation, sponsored by Rep. Beth Liston (D-Dublin) and Rep. Sara Carruthers (R-Hamilton) and introduced in late February, would also prohibit private health plans from increasing patient cost-sharing or from moving drugs to a more restrictive tier during a plan year.
2. HB 135 – Co-pay Accumulator
This legislation, known as HB 469 in the last general assembly, which would require health insurers and PBMs to count all payments made by patients directly or on their behalf toward their deductibles and out-of-pocket costs. It was reintroduced in mid-February by Rep. Susan Manchester (R-Waynesfield) and Rep. Thomas West (D-Canton).
3. SB 6 – Interstate Medical Licensure Compact
SB 6, which was introduced in mid-January. This bill, sponsored by Rep. Kristina Roegner (R-Hudson) and Rep. Steve Huffman (R-Tipp City), would enter Ohio into the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact. The Compact would provide physicians greater flexibility to practice across state lines while promoting patient safety, high-quality care, and increased patient access to physicians in Ohio.
4. HB 122 – Telemedicine
HB 122, legislation concerning telehealth, which was introduced by Rep. Mark Fraizer (R-Newark) and Rep. Adam Holmes (R-Nashport) in February. The bill has had several hearings in the House Insurance Committee since its introduction. HB 122 seeks to make some of the changes concerning telemedicine services during the pandemic permanent, add additional practitioners including psychologists and occupational therapists to existing law’s telemedicine services provisions, and require health plans to reimburse health care professionals for covered telehealth services.
5. HB 160 – Price Transparency
Introduced in the first week of March, HB 160 generally would impose certain requirements for providing reasonable, good faith estimates for health care services on physicians and providers. The medical community is in communication with the sponsor of this legislation, Rep. Adam Holmes (R-Nashport), about the aspects of this bill that are unworkable for physicians and practices, and the history of the physician advocacy community and the legislature’s work on the issue of price transparency.
6. HB 221 – APRN Independent Practice
The APRN independent practice issue has returned for this general assembly as HB 221. The physician community in continued opposition to allowing advanced practice registered nurses to practice independently with no physician oversight. HB 221 is sponsored by Rep. Tom Brinkman (R-Mt. Lookout), who sponsored APRN independent practice legislation in the last general assembly, and Rep. Jennifer Gross (R-West Chester), who is a nurse practitioner.