House Bill Pulled, but State Medical Practice Directives Remain

(St. Paul, Minnesota) - Citizens' Council on Health Care (CCHC) was set to testify on House File 2038 this afternoon in the House Civil Law Committee, but the bill was pulled.

"It is unclear why the bill was pulled, but we hope that our concerns about the legislature empowering the state to practice medicine are beginning to be recognized," said Twila Brase, president of the Citizens' Council on Health Care.

House File 2038 served as a vehicle to get only one part of the House's health care bill heard by the Civil Law Committee. Authored by Rep. Fran Bradley (R-Rochester), HF2038 contained the medical malpractice provisions of House File 1681, the House's health care cost containment bill. As such, it contained some of the "best practice guidelines" language opposed by CCHC.

CCHC CONCERNS REMAIN

"The state's idea of 'best practices' could easily become the patient's and doctor's idea of 'dictated practices,'" said Brase.

Despite the outcome of HF2038, the cost containment bill still authorizes the state to issue medical practice directives. The bill allows state tracking and monitoring of practitioners, financial and other incentives for practitioner compliance with state-issued practice directives, and use of state-endorsed "best practice guidelines" as an "absolute defense" against medical malpractice.

"The state must not be empowered to practice medicine. State-based cookie-cutter care will enable rationing of care, stifle innovation, and restrict the practitioner's ability to provide individualized patient-centered care," she added.

Media Contact:

Twila Brase, President
Phone: 651-646-8935 (office)
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