Legislation News

TEMSA is proud to offer a place to track EMS related bills during the 2015 Texas Legislative session.  We will continue to add bills as they are filed and update each of these as they go through the process.  Members can log in and see expanded content and leave comments.  This will allow the TEMSA Board to accurately represent our members on these important items.

TEMSA’s Cost Containment Recommendations

The Texas EMS Alliance submitted recommendations related to EMS costs for the Texas House Select Committee on Health Costs' request for ideas. Click here to view TEMSA's recommendations: Texas EMS Alliance - Statewide Health Care Costs […]

A Look at SB 2551 and Cancer Presumption for First Responders

By the Office of Injured Employee Counsel (OIEC) One of the most significant bills passed in the 86th Legislature affecting first responders was SB 2551. Due to the nature of employment, firefighters and emergency medical technicians (EMTs) could be exposed to conditions that may cause cancer. For this reason, certain cancers […]

Sixteen Texas EMS Agencies Selected for Medicare’s ET3 Program

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced on February 27, 2020, that 16 Texas EMS agencies were selected to participate in CMS's new Emergency Triage, Treat and Transport (ET3) program. CMS announced the model on February 14, 2019. According to CMS: "Emergency Triage, Treat, and Transport (ET3) is a voluntary, […]

Medicare’s Upcoming Educational Data Collection Events

Click here for the February 20 call, which focuses on reporting volunteer labor for the new data reporting system. Click here for the March 12 call, which focuses on public safety-based organizations for data collection. […]

Texas EMS Agencies Host Lawmakers and Aides

Texas EMS agencies dedicated the month of January to hosting state lawmakers and their aides to discuss the important care that Texas EMS agencies are delivering to Texas communities. TEMSA's president, Jeff Mincy, and Coryell Health EMS hosted their state senator, Dawn Buckingham, MD. Austin-Travis County EMS held a site visit for […]

Texas Workers’ Comp Proposes Rule for SB 2551

The Texas Department of Insurance - Division of Workers' Comp (TDI-DWC) proposed a rule for SB 2551, which was passed by the 2019 Texas Legislature to address Workers' Comp claims related to cancer for first responders. Click here to learn more about the proposed rule. Click here to learn more about the […]

Texas HHSC’s Response to TEMSA’s ET3 Request

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) submitted its interest in Medicare's new Emergency Triage, Treat, and Transport (ET3) program in a letter dated September 17, 2019. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently asked state Medicaid programs to indicate their willingness to work with the new program. […]

TEMSA Members Appointed to the Advisory Council on EMS

Texas Governor Greg Abbott appointed two members of the Texas EMS Alliance - Lucille Maes of Angleton Area Emergency Medical Corps and Dudley Wait of the City of Schertz - to the Advisory Council on Emergency Medical Services. HB 1869 was amended in the 2019 Texas Legislature to ensure that a […]

Medicare Extends the ET3 Deadline

Medicare's RFA for the ET3 program has been extended until October 5, 2019. Learn more: https://www.mcdermottplus.com/payment-innovation/et3-rfa-deadline-extended/ […]

TEMSA Encourages Texas HHSC to Participate in Medicare’s ET3 Program

The Texas EMS Alliance (TEMSA) submitted a letter to the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) encouraging it to participate in Medicare's new Emergency Triage, Treat and Transport Model (ET3). The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) encouraged state Medicaid programs to participate in the new model. Click here to […]

Medicare Unveils the Cost Data Collection Proposal

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released its calendar year (CY) 2020 proposed payment rule for the Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) on July 29, 2019, and it included the proposal for Medicare’s new ambulance cost data collection program. TEMSA provided a full overview of the proposal to TEMSA members […]

New Details on Medicare’s ET3 Model

Coming Soon – The Emergency Triage, Treat, and Transport (ET3) Model Application Portal and Tutorial Webinar   The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) and the ET3 Model team are pleased to announce that the RFA Application Portal will be available the week of August 5th, 2019. Another announcement will notify […]

Texas DSHS Trauma & Stroke Stakeholder Meetings

The Department of State Health Services will be holding stakeholder meetings in Austin to discuss rule revisions pertaining to Texas Administrative Code §157.125 Requirements for Trauma Facility Designation and §157.133 Requirements for Stroke Facility Designation. Stroke Rules Stakeholder Meeting: Monday, August 19, 2019; 10 AM – 4 PM HHSC – CO2 (DSHS, DHB) Room […]

EMS Action Alert to Support the DRP Replacement – HB 2048

Texas EMS agencies are encouraged to contact their state senators to support the driver responsibility program (DRP) replacement, HB 2048. Click here to find your state senators. EMS agencies are encouraged to call the Austin offices, identify themselves, and ask that the senator supports HB 2048. Each senator's web page also […]

EMS Bill to Address Rural Shortage and Restore LPGs Introduced in Austin

Texas State Representative Four Price (R-Amarillo) filed HB 1477, which would restore local project grant (LPG) funding for Texas EMS agencies and would create the Emergency Medical Services Scholarship Program for rural EMS agencies. “Due to rural hospital closures and other factors, a community’s EMS agency represents the only access to […]

Texas Senate Unveils Committee Assignments

Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick released the Texas Senate's committee assignments for the 86th Texas Legislature earlier today. Click here to view them: Senate Committees - 86th   […]

Texas Work Group on Mental Health Releases Recommendations

The 2017 Texas Legislature passed legislation that directed the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) to create a work group to study mental health access for first responders. Two of TEMSA's board members served on the work group. The work group released its recommendations for the 2019 Texas Legislature earlier […]

Texas House Select Committee on Opioids Releases Report

The Texas House Select Committee on Opioids and Substance Abuse released its report on December 3, 2018. The committee, which is chaired by Rep. Four Price, asked the Texas EMS Alliance to provide testimony on the EMS response to opioids in Texas. Ernesto Rodriguez of Austin-Travis County EMS provided TEMSA's […]

Texas Workers’ Comp Proposes Death Benefits Rule

HB 2119 was signed into law and allows surviving spouses of eligible first responders who died in action to remain eligible for death benefits are remarrying. The Texas Department of Insurance, Division of Workers' Compensation (TDI-DWC) has been tasked with developing a rule to implement the law. Click here to view […]

Texas’ Driver Responsibility Program and the 2019 Legislature

The Texas Tribune analyzed Texas' Driver Responsibility Program and the challenges that it will face in the 2019 Texas Legislature in an August 27, 2018 article. The program helps fund the state's emergency trauma care program. Click here to read more. […]

Texas Legislature Hearing on the EMS Response to Opioids

The Texas House Select Committee on Opioids and Substance Abuse held a June 26, 2018 hearing on the EMS response to opioids. Ernesto Rodriguez of Austin-Travis County EMS testified on behalf of the Texas EMS Alliance. Click here to read his written testimony. […]

Nineteen Medical Societies Request Review of BCBS ED Policy

Nineteen medical societies asked the Texas Department of Insurance to review Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas' policy that fully insured and HMO patients may be required to pay their entire medical bill if they go to an out-of-network emergency department for certain life-threatening conditions. The policy is slated to […]

Texas Medical Board’s Proposed Guidelines for Opioid Antagonists

The Texas Medical Board (TMB) issued proposed guidelines related to the prescription of opioid antagonists and for identifying persons at risk of an opioid-related overdose. The proposal was issued on January 29, 2018. March 11, 2018 is a potential date for adoption. Click here to read the proposal. […]

TEMSA Urges Calls to Congress on Medicare’s Add-on Payments

November 29, 2017 Re: Call Your Member of Congress on Medicare Add-on Payments Dear TEMSA Member: Congress must address several important items before the year ends, and the expiration of Medicare add-on payments for ambulances at the end of this month is one of those key items. E-mail and call your Member of Congress […]

“The Little Bill That Could (Save EMS)”

What would Americans do if federal law compromised how and how quickly paramedics can treat them or their child in a medical emergency? Thanks to an increasingly outspoken group of emergency physicians and bipartisan congressional collaboration, the bill that today became law ensures that they will never have to find […]

Texas House Committee to Address Out-of-Network Surprise Billing

The Texas House Insurance Committee will hold a hearing on several health insurance issues, including out-of-network surprise medical billing (balance billing),  on December 6: Evaluate recent efforts by the Legislature and the Texas Department of Insurance to minimize instances of surprise medical billing and to ensure the adequacy of health insurance […]

Congresses Passed EMS DEA Bill – HR 304

The U.S. House Energy & Commerce Committee issued the following release on November 2, 2017: WASHINGTON, DC – The House of Representatives today passed H.R. 304, the Protecting Patient Access to Emergency Medications Act, by unanimous consent. H.R. 304 will improve the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) registration process for emergency medical services (EMS) […]

OIEC First Responder Liaison for Texas Workers’ Comp

HB 2082, which created a first responder liaison at the Office of Injured Employee Counsel (OIEC) within the Texas Workers' Comp program, went into effect on September 1, 2017. Click here to learn more: OIEC First Responder Liaison HB 2082 […]

HHSC Delays Proposed Medicaid Ambulance Rates

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) sent the following message regarding the proposed ground ambulance cuts to Medicaid managed care organizations on September 5: HHSC is pending the reimbursement rate changes for Dental and Ambulance services proposed at the August 8, 2017, public rate hearing.  The proposed reimbursement rate […]

September 17 Deadline for GETAC Committees

Interested in serving on a GETAC committee? You have until midnight, September 17 to get your application in to DSHS. Committee members serve three-year terms. The application form can be downloaded from the News/Features column of the DSHS Office of EMS/Trauma Systems Coordination website: http://www.dshs.texas.gov/emstraumasystems/GETACCommApp.shtm. * Applications (via email) are due in the […]

Texas Senators Respond to Proposed EMS Medicaid Cuts

Twenty-two Texas state senators expressed concern regarding the proposed Medicaid cuts for Texas EMS agencies through a letter to the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. The letter was led by Senator Kel Seliger. Click here to view the letter: Senate Letter Ambulance Medicaid Rates 8-7-17 The senators include: Brian Birdwell Dawn Buckingham Donna Campbell Brandon Creighton Craig […]

Television Coverage of the Proposed Medicaid Cuts for Texas EMS

Austin television station KXAN covered Tuesday's hearing on proposed Medicaid cuts for Texas EMS agencies.  Click here to view the coverage: [video width="426" height="240" mp4="http://txemsa.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/KXAN-Medicaid-Hearing-08-08-2017_18.02.10.mp4"][/video] […]

Over 50 Texas State Representatives Sign on EMS Letter

Fifty-two Texas state representatives signed on a letter to the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) regarding proposed Medicaid proposed cuts to EMS service in Texas. Click here to learn more about the proposed cuts. Click here to view the letter: FINAL House Ambulance Letter Rep. Trent Ashby led the letter. The following […]

Stakeholder Groups Weigh in on Proposed Medicaid Cuts for Ambulances

The Texas EMS Alliance, Texas Hospital Association, Texas Organization of Rural & Community Hospitals (TORCH), Texas Association of Counties, Texas State Association of Fire Fighters, and Texas Ambulance Association added their names to a stakeholder letter regarding the Texas Health and Human Services Commission's proposed Medicaid cuts for ambulance rates […]

State Lawmakers Leading Letter on Proposed Medicaid Rates

State Rep. Trent Ashby and State Sen. Kel Seliger have agreed to lead a letter from state lawmakers to HHSC regarding the proposed Medicaid cuts for ambulance service in Texas. The letter will be closed out at the end of this week. The following details will help you reach out to your state representatives and […]

EMS Agencies Asked to Engage Texas Medicaid

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) will hold a stakeholder meeting on Tuesday, August 8 at 1:30 p.m. in Austin to discuss proposed Medicaid cuts for ground ambulance service in Texas.  Both ALS and BLS services would be cut by approximately 35 percent under the biennial review proposal for Medicaid. TEMSA […]

Proposed Medicaid Cuts for Texas EMS Agencies

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) has proposed significant Medicaid rate cuts for ground ambulance in Texas.  HHSC will hold a stakeholder meeting on August 8, 2017 to discuss its rate review for ambulances. Some of the proposed payment reductions for ground ambulance include: 34.39 percent reduction for emergency […]

Texas EMS Assistance Program Signed into Law

Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed HB 1407, the Texas EMS Assistance Program, into law on June 15.  HB 1407 creates the framework to preserve local project grants (LPGs) and initiate a distance-learning program for rural paramedics. HB 1407 was sponsored by Representative JD Sheffield (R-Gatesville) and Senator Kel Seliger (R-Amarillo). TEMSA identified […]

“Tailgate Ambulances” Unlikely to Be Affected by New Texas Law

A new Texas law - HB 1249 by Rep. Craig Goldman - will prohibit individuals from operating vehicles that may lead the lay person to believe that it is an actual emergency medical services vehicle.  An offense is punishable by a Class C misdemeanor. Former ambulances painted with team logos at […]

Texas Legislature Passes the Texas EMS Assistance Program

The Texas Senate passed HB 1407, the Texas EMS Assistance Program, on May 23.  As a result, it will now be sent to Governor Abbott for his signature. The bill creates the framework to preserve local project grants (LPGs) and creates a distance-learning program for rural paramedics to keep them in […]

Texas House Passes EMS Assistance Program Bill

The Texas House of Representatives passed the Texas EMS Assistance Program bill on May 3. HB 1407, which is sponsored by Rep. JD Sheffield (R-Gatesville), would preserve local project grants (LPGs) and create a distance-learning training program for rural paramedics. Other bill authors include Reps. Chris Paddie (R-Marshall), Diego Bernal (D-San Antonio), […]

Texas House Committee to Consider HB 1407

The Texas House Public Health Committee is scheduled to hear testimony on HB 1407, the Texas EMS Assistance Program, on April 4. The bill would preserve local project grants and create a rural distance-learning program for paramedics in rural areas. HB 1407 is sponsored by Reps JD Sheffield, Drew Darby, Diego Bernal, […]

Fuel Tax Relief Bill for EMS Introduced in Austin

Texas State Rep. Tan Parker (R-Flower Mound) introduced HB 1332, which would provide fuel tax relief to EMS agencies that provide 9-1-1 services for Texas communities.  The Texas EMS Alliance strongly supports HB 1332.  Click here for more information. First responders such as fire and police receive fuel tax relief. Also, […]

Rep. JD Sheffield Introduces the Texas EMS Assistance Program

Texas State Rep. JD Sheffield, DO (R-Gateville) filed the Texas EMS Assistance Program (HB 1407), which would create a dedicated fund to ensure the future of local project grants (LPGs) and develop a distance-learning program to keep paramedics in rural communities. Click here to learn more about the legislation. […]

Introduce EMS to Texas Lawmakers – Action Alert

TEMSA is asking Texas EMS agencies to contact their state representatives and senators to introduce them to EMS issues and the EMS agencies in their districts.  Once the committees begin meeting and considering legislation in February, we will ask EMS agencies to contact their lawmakers to make specific asks regarding […]

Texas Senate Committee Members Named

Texas State Senate Committee assignments were named yesterday.  Senator Charles Schwertner will remain as the chair of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee.  Senator Kelly Hancock also will remain as chair of the Senate Business and Commerce Committee, which has jurisdiction over commercial health insurance issues. Click here to view […]

Texas Senator Releases Balance Billing Draft

Texas Senator Kelly Hancock, the chair of the Senate Business and Commerce Committee, released a stakeholder draft on balance billing and out-of-network payments. The Texas EMS Alliance updated its members on the issue in TEMSA's January 13, 2017 e-mail newsletter. […]

TEMSA Testified at the Texas Legislature’s Interim Hearing on EMS/Trauma

[caption id="attachment_942" align="alignleft" width="300"] TEMSA board members Butch Oberhoff, Keir Vernon, Jeff Mincy, Jonathan Sell, and Dudley Wait representing the Texas EMS industry before the Texas Legislature.[/caption] Texas EMS Alliance board members Dudley Wait of Schertz and Jonathan Sell of Booker provided testimony on EMS issues at today's hearing at the […]

Designated Infection Control Officer SB 1574 Rule

The Department of State Health Services (DSHS) Council recently considered the DSHS rule for SB 1574, which creates a designated infection control officer within agencies to handle information concerning infection disease outbreaks. Click here to read the rule: SB 1574 Infection Control Officer Rule Nov 2015 […]

Public Policy Presentation for the Texas EMS Conference

The Texas EMS Alliance will be hosting a public policy symposium at the Texas EMS Conference in Dallas on Monday, November 23 at 1:30 p.m.  The presentation will focus on the state and federal public policy issues that EMS providers will want to monitor over the next few months. To prepare for the […]

Ambulance Traffic to Freestanding ERs: Does It Make Sense?

Freestanding ERs have exploded in growth in Texas.  Some independent facilities are now talking to EMS providers about driving traffic to the facilities. TEMSA recently sat down with one of the facilities that is seeking ambulance traffic to learn more about its efforts.  TEMSA members are invited to read a Q&A […]

Texas Tobacco Funds for Texas EMS/RACs Delayed

TEMSA members recently received notification from their RACs that the tobacco fund used for RACs may be jeopardized.  For now, the tobacco funding is in a holding pattern due to several factors, including the merger of several processes regarding contracting within DSHS and HHSC and the Cancer Prevention Research Institute of […]

Analysis of the 84th Texas Legislature

A lengthy analysis of the 84th Texas Legislature and the dozens of bills that affect EMS is now available to TEMSA members.  Governor Abbott has addressed several bills that affect EMS, including several bill signings and vetoes.  The EMS community was particularly interested in the signing of HB 2498, which adds […]

TX House Considers Tuition Relief Bill for EMS

This morning, a Texas House of Representatives committee will consider HB 3273 (Rep. Eddie Rodriguez, D-Austin), which would provide tuition relief to some EMS personnel. TEMSA members will be supporting the legislation this morning.  Click here to read TEMSA's support letter and learn more: HB 3273 TEMSA Support Letter […]

Paramedic Scope Bills Moving Through Legislature

The paramedic "scope of practice" bills, which would allow paramedics to perform some services in hospital emergency departments and freestanding ERs, are moving in both chambers. HB 2020 (Rep. Mando Martinez, D-Weslaco) was voted out of the House Public Health Committee last week.  SB 1899 (Senator Donna Campbell, R-New Braunfels) was […]

Committee Fund for Bill to Fully Fund EMS & Trauma

A Texas House committee will hear HB 1437 (Rep. Sylvester Turner, D-Houston), which would ensure that funds earmarked trauma services are sent to trauma programs. TEMSA will be supporting the legislation when it is considered today.  Click here to learn more about the issue and read TEMSA's support: HB 1437 Trauma Support Letter […]

TEMSA Supports Interstate Compact Bill – HB 2498

On Tuesday, the House Public Health Committee will consider HB 2498, which add Texas to the list of states that approve an interstate licensure compact bill for EMS personnel. TEMSA board members Ryan Matthews of Trans Star Ambulance and Butch Oberhoff of Acadian Ambulance will testify on behalf of TEMSA. Click here to […]

Vehicles Resembling Ambulances Draw TX Legislature’s Attention

On April 16, the Texas House Committee on Transportation will consider HB 2722 (Rep. Craig Goldman, R-Arlington), which would make it illegal for prohibit non-emergency vehicles from resembling ambulances. TEMSA is pleased to announce support for this important legislation.  Click here to read more: HB 2722 Ambulance Support Letter April 2015 […]

Movement for Bills Addressing EMS Personnel & Bodily Fluids

On Tuesday, the Texas House Urban Affairs Committee will consider HB 2770 (Rep. Mando Martinez, D-Weslaco), which would give EMS personnel access to timely information regarding bodily fluids that they may encounter during the scope of their work. SB 1574, the Senate companion bill (Senator Carlos Uresti, D-San Antonio), was heard […]

TEMSA Endorses SB 1574 – Critical Support for EMS Personnel

Earlier today, the Texas Senate Health and Human Services Committee heard testimony on SB 1574, which would provide critical support to EMS personnel and firefighters by providing them the same information that law enforcement officers are entitled to when they come into contact with bodily fluids during the course or […]

Texas House Considering Distracted Driving Bill on March 25

The Texas House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on a distracted driving bill, HB 80, on Wednesday, March 25.  The bill is sponsored by Rep. Tom Craddick, R-Midland. To learn how you can contact your lawmakers to support it, please visit the TETAF grassroots action Web page by clicking here.   […]

EMS Bills: March 13th TX Legislature Filing Deadline

Last Friday (March 13) was the Texas House of Representative's bill filing deadline.  To view the list of bills that TEMSA is following, click here: 03.17.15 TEMSA 84th TX Legislature Bill Summary This bill summary was updated on March 17, 2015.  For complete analysis and regular updates, please turn to TEMSA's members-only e-mail […]

HB 237 Springer

HB 237 by Springer Abstract: relating to the licensure or certification of volunteer firefighters and members of industrial emergency response teams.   […]

HB 142 Strickland

HB 142  by Strickland Abstract: relating to the authority of the governing body of a local authority to impose a civil penalty for certain violations recorded by an automated traffic control system or a photographic traffic signal enforcement system.   […]

HB 353 King (Hemphill)

HB 353 by King  (Hemphill) Abstract: relating to the application of certain weapons laws to certain volunteer emergency services personnel licensed to carry a concealed handgun.   […]

HB 72 Goldman

[et_pb_section admin_label="section"] [et_pb_row admin_label="row"] [et_pb_column type="4_4"][et_pb_text admin_label="Text"]HB 72 by Goldman Abstract:  relating to a prohibition on the sale or transfer of certain law enforcement vehicles before removal of certain equipment and insignia.  [/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column] [/et_pb_row] [/et_pb_section] […]

HB 60 Martinez

HB 60 by Martinez Abstract: relating to firefighters and emergency medical technicians who bring certain claims for benefits or compensation   […]

HB 50 Martinez

HB 50 by Martinez Abstract: relating to certain diseases or illnesses suffered by firefighters and emergency medical technicians.   […]