Testimony Before The House Human Services Committee
Clara Sue Price, Chairman
SB 2159 - Final rules on Medicaid and Healthy Steps
February 15, 2005
Chairman Price, members of the committee, I am, David Zentner, Director Medical Services for the Department of Human Services. I appear before you to support this proposed Legislation.
The Healthy Steps to Vision system project included reviewing Medicaid and Healthy Steps programs in an attempt to simplify eligibility rules and to make the rules and processing compatible wherever possible. The policies identified for change allowed us to simplify and clarify policy for applicants and recipients, simplify the system processing, and will allow for a smoother transition of existing Healthy Steps cases into Vision.
Needed changes were identified throughout the design phase of the project, which recently ended. The project is scheduled for completion in June 2005, which does not allow enough time for the rules to be changed through the normal rulemaking process. Without interim final rules by June, the roll out of the project could be delayed, which would not allow other system projects or enhancements to begin.
For these reasons, and because none of the rule changes should negatively impact any applicants or recipients, the department respectfully recommends a do pass on this bill.
I will be glad to answer any questions you may have.