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Healthcare Issues on Tap at Texas Legislative Session

While Texas has headed the federal lawsuit seeking to put an end to the Affordable Care Act, legislators at the 86th Texas Legislature will be tacking a variety of health-related issues. These will include:

Medicaid. The state’s program has been under scrutiny since the Dallas Morning News reported that private companies running the program have not cared for vulnerable Texans, instead putting money toward lobbyists and executive bonuses. In addition, the state has resisted expanding coverage for low-income Texans, but the case is being made that doing so could provide financial savings.

Opioids. A recent report indicated that nearly 3,000 Texans died from opioid and other drug overdoses in 2017. Some of the report’s recommendations included making more medication-assisted treatment options available for doctors and patients, and providing more help to vulnerable populations.

Maternal Care. Though maternal mortality rates are lower in Texas versus other states, health advocates point out that legislators need to help more Texas mothers access prenatal care, postpartum care and in conquering substance abuse and mental health issues.

Mental Health. One issue to watch will be how legislators focus on vulnerable populations who need access to care, as well as suicide prevention, funding for mental health services, and salary increases for state hospital workers.

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Mark El-Rayes is an award winning designer and photographer from Beirut, Lebanon. El-Rayes has over 15 years in the design industry, 5 years of which he served as a Mass Communication Specialist in the United States Navy at Naval Air Station North Island, Navy Public Affairs Support Element - West (NPASE). El-Rayes is a full-stack developer, seo specialist, photographer, and artist.