Texas Lawmaker Calls on State to Fix Teacher Retirement System Care

“Teachers statewide are sharing their stories with us, hellish stories about people having to choose between medication and food, medication and rent, medication and just basic living necessities…….” 

RISKMANAGERS.US: Instead of throwing good money after bad, cost shifting to consumers, all contributing to the erosion of the American middle class, Texas should lead the country in solving health care. Reference Based Pricing, direct contracting, point of sale claim adjudication/payment, cost plus Rx payment methodologies and other risk management strategies have proven successful for Texas employers  like San Patricio County in South Texas. (Beating Medical Trend – Managed Care vs Reference Based Pricing and Health Care Strategies for Political Subdivisions.)

As a Texan I am sad to admit the little tiny state of Montana took the lead two years ago and now we hear the bright red Republic of California may be doing the same with California Assembly Bill 3087. (California Assembly Bill 3087 Would Control Prices in the Commercial Market.) When will Texas legislators wake up? Has Texas Lost It’s Cajones?.

Lawmaker Calls on State to Fix Teacher Retirement System Care

By: Marlane Rodriguez

Apr 10, 2018

EDINBURG, Texas – State Rep. Terry Canales is calling on Governor Greg Abbott to schedule a special session, so lawmakers can fix the collapsing Teacher Retirement System’s TRS-Care, which insures around 270,000 retired teachers, public school employees and their dependents.

“If we can’t take care of the people who take care of our children we have a wholly failed,” Canales said.

The next time the Texas Legislature meets is January 2019, but Canales believes teachers can’t wait until then.

“Teachers statewide are sharing their stories with us, hellish stories about people having to choose between medication and food, medication and rent, medication and just basic living necessities,” he said.

“Nightmare story after nightmare story, of people whose co-pay was $50 and now their medication is $900. This is not an isolated incident, there are hundreds if not thousands of teachers across the state of Texas that are in dire need of the legislature fulfilling the promise that was made to them,” he continued.

The issue was part of the July 2018 Special Session, but Canales said it only resulted in a temporary fix.

“There’s nothing more pressing that I can think of right now, than ensuring that these people have the health care they deserve,” he said.

So that the educators can continue to do what they love without worrying about their health and finances.

Canales joined State Senator Jose Menendez from San Antonio in requesting a special session to fix the teacher healthcare system.

Write RiskManager@RiskManagers.us

FROM PHYSICIAN

This guy wants the taxpayers to step up and pay these outrageous prices for drugs when the real culprit is the pharmaceutical companies.  If the TRS plan were to simply put a limit on paying for these things (maybe that’s what the problem is right now – they don’t pay for them), it would seem that enough pressure will eventually come to bear on the drug companies to stop raping people and the medical plans with their pricing.  If we as a state just cave in and pay for this stuff, the drug companies will keep on with their bad behavior.  In the meantime, it’s unfortunate, but the patients are the ones who suffer from lack of access to newer drugs that make a difference.

Pharmaceutical companies, by continuing their outrageous pricing strategies, are in the process of bankrupting small and mid-sized business’ medical plans, and some of their employees in the process.  I just don’t think the state should be buying into paying for these obscenely priced drugs.

FROM CONSULTANT

They won’t do RBR because the Consultant is 100 years old and doesn’t understand it, the actuary is carrier crazy and Aetna can’t do it…

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