However, that’s not the case this week with one bill.
This page joins Alabama Arise, the advocacy group that lobbies on behalf of the state’s low-income residents, and the countless millions looking for leadership from Montgomery in thanking the Legislature for something it did. Lawmakers passed and sent to Gov. Robert Bentley a Medicaid restructuring bill that will start us on the way to a more consumer-friendly and cost-effective health care system for vulnerable Alabamians.
In the place of the current centralized statewide administrative structure, the bill sets up a network of regional care organizations (RCOs) that give local people — providers, consumers and administrators — more control over health-care delivery. It also gives advocacy groups like Alabama Arise a voice in recommending people who will sit on the governing board and advisory committee in the RCOs. The purpose is to reduce costs and reward health-care providers for efficient preventive and primary care (and penalize those whose care is costly and/or delayed).
At the heart of the bill is the sensible conviction that one of the best ways to control and even reduce rising health-care costs is a program that stresses prevention, encourages early diagnosis of problems and delivers health care quickly and efficiently.
This act is a significant step in that direction. As Alabama Arise has pointed out, it “makes sense for health care and for the state budget.
For this the Legislature deserves a round of applause.