A selection of health policy stories from Texas, Washington state, Minnesota and Georgia.
The Associated Press/Washington Post: Texas Retains Old Women's Health Program With Planned Parenthood For Now
Planned Parenthood will continue to receive funds from a joint Texas and federal program providing health care to low-income women, despite the state's promise to exclude its clinics by Nov. 1 because they are affiliated with abortion providers (10/31).
Houston Chronicle: Texas To Keep Planned Parenthood In Health Program – For Now
Planned Parenthood will remain part of the Women's Health Program for now, state officials said Wednesday, putting off the organization's ouster as critics questioned whether enough health-care providers would exist without it. Gov. Rick Perry and Texas Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner Kyle Janek cited court action and a desire to hold on to federal funding in putting off Thursday's anticipated start of a new Texas Women's Health Program, which would be run only with state dollars and without Planned Parenthood. Perry on Wednesday said Texas remains committed to barring the clinics from the program, saying state law excludes those affiliated with abortion providers (Fikac, 10/31).
The Seattle Times: Autism Therapy To Be Covered For Children On Medicaid
Children with autism spectrum disorders insured by the state's Apple Health program, including those on Medicaid, will be covered for Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy under a lawsuit settlement approved by U.S. District Court Judge Richard A. Jones. The lawsuit was filed by the Northwest Justice Project, a statewide legal aid program, in the wake of similar settlements in other class-action suits brought by law firm Sirianni Youtz Spoonemore against insurers' limits or exclusions of neurodevelopmental and behavioral therapies. The state has already settled one lawsuit for ABA coverage under the Uniform Medical Plan for state employees and some school districts and local governments (Ostrom, 10/31).