The osteopathic medical profession helped lead legislative changes in Michigan and Idaho that will improve access to care for patients and physicians.
Last month, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder signed into law a bill amending the state’s insurance code requiring health insurers to provide for the synchronization of multiple prescription drugs for the treatment of chronic conditions. The “Med Synchronization Bill” lets patients work with their physician and pharmacist to synchronize multiple prescriptions each month.
The Michigan Osteopathic Association (MOA) was a leading proponent of the bill throughout the process. MOA Executive Director Kris Nicholoff and MOA Student Trustee Duncan McGuire, OMS II, were invited to join Gov. Snyder and the bill’s author State Sen. Margaret O’Brien, R-Portage, at the signing ceremony.
Advocacy by the AOA and the Idaho Osteopathic Physicians Association (IOPA) resulted in the enactment of House Bill 500 by Idaho Gov. Butch Otter last month. The bill increases Medicaid payment rates for certain mental health services from 27% to 91% percent of Medicare rates.
The AOA and IOPA believe increasing payment rates is vital to ensuring continued physician participation in the Medicaid program, and access to mental health services for the state’s low-income patients.