Texas Health and Human Services Digest: February 3, 2021

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From HHSC: While every effort has been made to offer an accurate and current listing of meeting agendas and events on this calendar, the information has been compiled from a variety of sources and is subject to change without notice to the user.

Please Note: This is a comprehensive list of upcoming meetings provided by HHSC. Not every meeting fits the parameters for coverage by Texas Insight. Refer to Texas Insight’s “Weekly Insight” newsletters for regular updates on planned coverage.

February 4, 2021

February 5, 2021

February 8, 2021

February 9, 2021

February 10, 2021

February 11, 2021

February 12, 2021

February 17, 2021

February 25, 2021

Proposed Rules
Formal Comments via the Texas Register
To let the public know about a rulemaking action – such as new, amended or repealed rules – HHS publishes a notice in the Texas Register, a publication of the Texas Secretary of State. Interested parties then can review and comment on the proposed rule. The Secretary of State publishes a new issue of the Texas Register each Friday.

The Administrative Procedure Act (Texas Government Code, Chapter 2001) requires the notice published in the Texas Register to include a brief explanation of the proposed rule and a request for comments from any interested person. The notice also includes instructions for submitting comments regarding the rule to the agency, including the date by which comments must be submitted. Agencies must give interested persons “a reasonable opportunity” to submit comments. The public comment period begins on the day after the notice of a proposed rule is published in the Texas Register and lasts for a minimum of 30 calendar days.

Below is a list of proposed rules that have been published in the Texas Register. The proposed rules that are published in the Texas Register are open for public comment until the end of the comment period.

TitleProject No., DescriptionContactComment End Date
Title 26, Chapter 553, Licensing Standards for Assisted Living Facilities#19R066: Assisted Living Facilities ReorganizationHHS Rules Coordination Office3/1/21
Title 25, Chapter 131, concerning Freestanding Emergency Medical Care Facilities#20R009: Freestanding Emergency Medical Care FacilitiesHHS Policy, Rules and Training2/22/21
Title 26, Chapter 509, concerning Freestanding Emergency Medical Care Facilities#20R009: Freestanding Emergency Medical Care FacilitiesHHS Policy, Rules and Training2/22/21
Title 1, Chapter 353, Subchapter O, Sections 353.1320 and 353.1322, concerning Community Mental Health Center Directed Payment Program#21R038: Community Mental Health Center Directed Payment ProgramKimberly Tucker2/13/21
Title 1, Chapter 353, Subchapter O, Sections 353.1315 and 353.1317, concerning Rural Health Clinic Directed Payment Program#21R040: Rural Health Clinic Directed Payment ProgramKimberly Tucker2/13/21

Draft Rules Informal Comments

Informal opportunities to comment occur before a rule is published in the Texas Register. HHS staff may solicit informal public and stakeholder input by:

  • inviting stakeholders to submit comments on potential rule changes during rule development.
  • sharing a draft rule with stakeholders for review.
  • using existing HHS advisory committees to comment on rules.
TitleProject No.ContactComment Start DateComment End Date
Title 25, Chapter 295, Subchapter I, Texas Environmental Lead Reduction#21R034DSHS Environmental Hazards Branch1/28/212/11/21

2021 Schedule
As HHSC has received a waiver to Rate Hearing Requirements, there will not be a rate hearing conducted on many of these rates.

TitleProposed Effective DatePacket
Updated
Documents
Notice Of Proposed Prospective Reimbursement For Rural Hospitals Participating In MedicaidSeptember 01, 2021 Notice Of Proposed Prospective Reimbursement For Rural Hospitals Participating In Medicaid
09-01-2021-prospective-reimbursement-rural-hospitals-in-medicaid.pdf

Notice Of Proposed Prospective Reimbursement For Rural Hospitals Participating In Medicaid Attachment
09-01-2021-prospective-reimbursement-rural-hospitals-in-medicaid-attch-rate-vis.pdf

Proposed Payment Rates for Home and Community-Based Services – Adult Mental Health (HCBS-AMH) Supported Home Living (SHL) and Youth Empowerment Services (YES) Waiver In-Home RespiteApril 01, 2021 Proposed Payment Rates for Home and Community-Based Services – Adult Mental Health (HCBS-AMH) Supported Home Living (SHL) and Youth Empowerment Services (YES) Waiver In-Home Respite
04-01-2021-proposed-rate-hcs-hcbs-mh-sbl-yes-waiver-ihresp.pdf
Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates, or Charges for Medicaid Biennial Calendar Fee Review of the following: Long Acting Reversible Contraceptives (LARCs)April 01, 2021 Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates, or Charges for Medicaid Biennial Calendar Fee Review of the following: Long Acting Reversible Contraceptives (LARCs)
04-01-2021-larcs-biennialcalendarfeereview.pdf
Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Wound CareMarch 01, 2021 Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Wound Care
03-2021-policy-woundcare.pdf
Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Telemonitoring UpdateMarch 01, 2021 Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Telemonitoring Update
03-2021-policy-telemonitoring.pdf
Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Stereotactic RadiosurgeryMarch 01, 2021 Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Stereotactic Radiosurgery
03-2021-policy-stereotactic-radiosurgery.pdf
Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Nutritional (Enteral) Products, Supplies, and Equipment – Home Health & CCP: Immobilized Lipase CartridgeMarch 01, 2021 Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Nutritional (Enteral) Products, Supplies, and Equipment – Home Health & CCP: Immobilized Lipase Cartridge
03-2021-policy-nutrional-prod-sup-equip.pdf
Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Digital Breast TomosynthesisMarch 01, 2021 Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Digital Breast Tomosynthesis
03-2021-policy-dbt.pdf
Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Colorectal Cancer Screening PolicyMarch 01, 2021 Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Colorectal Cancer Screening Policy
03-2021-policy-colorectal-cancer-screen.pdf
Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS)March 01, 2021 Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS)
03-2021-policy-hcpcs.pdf

Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) Attachments
03-2021-policy-hcpcs-att.zip

Biennial Calendar Fee ReviewMarch 01, 2021 Biennial Calendar Fee Review
03-2021-biennialcalendarfeereview.pdf

Biennial Calendar Fee Review Attachments
03-2021-biennialcalendarfeereview-att.zip

Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Medical Transportation Program (MTP) Fee ReviewJanuary 01, 2021 Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Medical Transportation Program (MTP) Fee Review
01-2021-medical-transport.pdf
Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for 2021 Annual Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) UpdatesJanuary 01, 2021 Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for 2021 Annual Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) Updates
01-01-2021-policy-hcpcs-annual-2021.pdf

Notice of Proposed Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for 2021 Annual Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) Updates Attachments
01-01-2021-policy-hcpcs-annual-2021-att.zip

Notice of Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Quarterly Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) Updates Related to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) High Throughput TestingJanuary 01, 2021 Notice of Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Quarterly Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) Updates Related to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) High Throughput Testing
01-01-2021-notice-adjfees-hcpcs-covid19-highthrouhput-testing.pdf
Notice of Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Quarterly Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) Updates Related to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)January 01, 2021 Notice of Adjustments to Fees, Rates or Charges for Quarterly Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) Updates Related to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
01-01-2021-notice-adjfeesratescharges-hcpcs-covid19.pdf

Demographic SNAPshot: Not Everyone Eligible for Food Assistance Program Receives Benefits. Who’s eligible for and who actually accesses benefits from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) varies from state to state, year to year, and county to county.

SNAP, a program of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), is the nation’s largest federal effort to reduce hunger. It reached 38 million people in fiscal year 2019 but a recent report estimates that about one in six of those eligible did not participate in the program.

Read More.

Now, a new visualization produced by the U.S. Census Bureau with support from the USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service, the USDA’s Economic Research Service, and data from multiple state partners shows estimates of SNAP eligibility and access rates at the state and county levels for 16 states for select years.

The visualization, which uses American Community Survey (ACS) and state administrative records data, aims to increase understanding of access to SNAP and inform future outreach.

Continue reading to learn more about:

  • How data from the ACS was used in the visualization
  • State and county-level eligibility rate estimates
  • Eligibility and access patterns in selected states, over time, and across counties within states
  • Demographic characteristics of eligible SNAP participants and nonparticipants at the state and county level

Research Highlight: NIH Initiative Expands Access to Resources for Early Psychosis Treatment and Research. The Early Psychosis Intervention Network (EPINET), a broad research initiative aimed at determining how to provide the best treatment for individuals experiencing symptoms of early psychosis, continues to expand its reach by increasing access to resources for researchers, providers, and families. Among other efforts, the initiative is growing its network of research hubs and launched a new web portal. EPINET is supported by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).

Learn more.

Gov. Abbott, HHSC Announce Extension of Emergency SNAP Benefits for February. Gov. Greg Abbott announced that the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) will provide approximately $300 million in emergency Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) food benefits for the month of February as the state continues its response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Recipients will also continue to receive an additional 15 percent increase in their total benefits in February. Read more here.

Texas HHS Receives National Suicide Prevention Lifeline GrantTexas Health and Human Services today announces it is receiving more than $180,000 in funding toward implementing a new national three-digit dialing code, 988, for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

The grant funds will be used to help Texas Lifeline call centers prepare for infrastructure needs and additional callers, purchase headsets and computers, train and educate staff and data collection. The funding comes from Vibrant Emotional Health, the nonprofit administrator of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline and the 988 State Planning Grant.

Effective July 2022, the new 988 Lifeline will replace 1-800-273-TALK (8255). Federal legislation authorizing 988 as the three-digit code for the Lifeline was passed in October 2020.

HHSC recommends people in crisis and concerned family members continue to call the Lifeline at 800-273-8255 (800-273-TALK) until the 988 number becomes effective.

To learn more about suicide prevention and crisis centers, visit the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline website and the HHS Suicide Prevention page. For more information on accessing behavioral health services in Texas, please visit the MentalHealthTX website.

About the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. Funded by the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides free and confidential emotional support and crisis counseling to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week across the United States. The Lifeline is comprised of a national network of over 180 local crisis centers, uniting local resources with national best practices.

DEADLINE EXTENDED: Texas HIV Medication Advisory Committee Applications Due Feb. 14. If you’re interested in Texas HIV Medication issues, you may want to apply to be a member of the Texas HIV Medication Advisory Committee. But act quickly as applications are due Feb. 14!

Click here to learn more and apply.

DSHS RSV Data Update. This information has recently been updated and is now available.