Tribpedia: Texas Medical Association

The Texas Medical Association (TMA) was organized by 35 physicians in 1853 to serve the people of Texas in matters of medical care, prevention and cure of disease, and the improvement of public health.

TMA supports Texas physicians by providing solutions to the challenges they encounter in the care of patients. Nearly 45,000 physicians and medical students are members.

Nurse practitioners again push for independence

State Rep. Stephanie Klick, R-North Richland Hills, with State Rep. Donna Howard, D-Austin, announcing the Coalition for Health Care Access  that will work toward expanding access to health care in Texas this legislative session.  Klick is introducing HB 1415 and SB 681 to remove outdated and costly regulatory barriers for APRN nurses.
State Rep. Stephanie Klick, R-North Richland Hills, with State Rep. Donna Howard, D-Austin, announcing the Coalition for Health Care Access that will work toward expanding access to health care in Texas this legislative session. Klick is introducing HB 1415 and SB 681 to remove outdated and costly regulatory barriers for APRN nurses.

Multiple bills filed in the Texas Legislature are seeking to give certain Texas nurses independence from costly contracts with supervising physicians.

Physician Christine Le, an osteopathy specialist at the Kelsey-Seybold Clinic in Houston, checks up on her patients Mary Ann Goolsby and her husband Joseph Goolsby, Tuesday June 10, 2014.
Physician Christine Le, an osteopathy specialist at the Kelsey-Seybold Clinic in Houston, checks up on her patients Mary Ann Goolsby and her husband Joseph Goolsby, Tuesday June 10, 2014.

Physicians Try to Limit Outside Influence in Prescribing of Drugs

More doctors and medical facilities are working to reduce interactions between physicians and pharmaceutical representatives, and they have some support from the pharmaceutical industry.

Dr. Rose Okoro, a nurse practitioner, who owns Daystar Family Clinic in Katy, is shown on May 12. 2014. She says she has struggled to treat a greater number of Medicaid patients because of state regulations.
Dr. Rose Okoro, a nurse practitioner, who owns Daystar Family Clinic in Katy, is shown on May 12. 2014. She says she has struggled to treat a greater number of Medicaid patients because of state regulations.

Nurse Practitioners Say That Greater Autonomy Would Cure Challenges

Nurse practitioners say state regulations, which link them to supervising physicians, limit their ability to treat patients in a state with a looming shortage of primary care physicians. 

Helen Hawkins, a certified pediatric nurse practitioner, treats 13-month-old Kevin Gorostieta at Carousel Pediatrics in Austin on Nov. 8, 2012.
Helen Hawkins, a certified pediatric nurse practitioner, treats 13-month-old Kevin Gorostieta at Carousel Pediatrics in Austin on Nov. 8, 2012.

Medicaid Fraud Settlement Worries Health Providers

For providers who treat the state’s poorest patients, a settlement between the state and a Medicaid provider raises questions about how the state distinguishes fraudulent intent from human error.

Nurse practitioner Christina Blanco speaks to the office manager at her medical spa and clinic in Las Cruces, N.M. on Saturday, Nov. 23, 2013. The spa and clinic was previously in El Paso for several years, but moved to Las Cruces in October and currently has six employees.
Nurse practitioner Christina Blanco speaks to the office manager at her medical spa and clinic in Las Cruces, N.M. on Saturday, Nov. 23, 2013. The spa and clinic was previously in El Paso for several years, but moved to Las Cruces in October and currently has six employees.

Despite Changes, Nurses Push for Independence

Although Texas lawmakers loosened physician supervision requirements for advanced practice nurses in the 2013 legislative session, some health providers argue they should have allowed them to practice independently, too.

March 6th, 2012: Protest against Texas lawmakers decision regarding changed to the  the Women's Health Program. the federal government is expected to cut funding for the program because Texas improperly excluded Planned Parenthood from its list of providers
March 6th, 2012: Protest against Texas lawmakers decision regarding changed to the the Women's Health Program. the federal government is expected to cut funding for the program because Texas improperly excluded Planned Parenthood from its list of providers

"Obamacare" on Center Stage

From contraception and cancer screenings to "Obamacare" and state physician shortages, here's a look at the month ahead in Texas health policy. 

Dr. Javier Saenz with a patient, Elena Chavez, 73. Chavez is part of the 50 percent of patients Saenz sees who draw from both Medicare and Medicaid.
Dr. Javier Saenz with a patient, Elena Chavez, 73. Chavez is part of the 50 percent of patients Saenz sees who draw from both Medicare and Medicaid.

State Cuts Squeezing the Doctors for Elderly Poor

After the state reduced its share of co-payments for Texans who are dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid, doctors who treat such patients are seeing revenue disruptions.