HBA-MPM H.B. 2614 77(R) BILL ANALYSIS Office of House Bill AnalysisH.B. 2614 By: Solis, Jim Public Health 7/10/2001 Enrolled BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE During the 76th legislative interim, the Senate Subcommittee on Border Affairs studied dental health as a part of a broader charge to find ways to improve the overall condition of health along the Texas-Mexico border. Testimony provided to the committee indicated that only 26 percent of children eligible for Medicaid received dental screenings in 1996, and the percentage of children receiving such care is predicted to be lower in rural areas. When children do not receive oral health care at an early age, it can lead to more serious problems such as gum disease, which are more difficult and costly to treat in the long run. House Bill 2614 establishes a dental care pilot program in the border region to serve indigent children. RULEMAKING AUTHORITY It is the opinion of the Office of House Bill Analysis that this bill does not expressly delegate any additional rulemaking authority to a state officer, department, agency, or institution. ANALYSIS House Bill 2614 requires the Texas Department of Health (TDH) to develop and implement a dental care pilot program (program) to provide dental services to indigent children in border-region counties selected by TDH. The bill requires the Texas Board of Health (board) to establish eligibility criteria for program participants. The criteria must require that participants live within the identified region, have a family income at or below 185 percent of the federal poverty level, and provide a parent's or guardian's written consent to receipt of dental services. TDH is required to determine which dental services are to be provided to participants, which may include screenings, filling cavities, cleaning teeth, and other services. The bill requires TDH to ensure that a participant receives services provided through the program at no cost and that the quality of the services is frequently monitored and evaluated. The bill requires the board to establish eligibility criteria and any other procedures or requirements necessary to implement the program as soon as practicable after September 1, 2001. The bill requires TDH to submit a report to the legislature no later than December 1, 2002 that includes recommendations and an analysis of the program's costeffectiveness and effect on the quality of dental care received by participants. The program ends September 1, 2003. EFFECTIVE DATE September 1, 2001.