S.B. No. 24
  relating to certain health care services provided through
  telemedicine or telehealth under the state Medicaid program.
         SECTION 1.  Section 531.0217, Government Code, is amended by
  adding Subsections (c-1), (c-2), and (c-3) to read as follows:
         (c-1)  Notwithstanding Subsection (b) or (c), the commission
  shall provide for reimbursement under the Medicaid program for an
  office visit provided through telemedicine by a physician who is
  assessing and evaluating the patient from a distant site if:
               (1)  a health professional acting under the delegation
  and supervision of that physician is present with the patient at the
  time of the visit; and
               (2)  the medical condition, illness, or injury for
  which the patient is receiving the service is not likely, within a
  reasonable degree of medical certainty, to undergo material
  deterioration within the 30-day period following the date of the
         (c-2)  The commission shall develop rules to allocate
  reimbursement provided under Subsection (c-1) between a physician
  consulting from a distant site and a health professional present
  with the patient or shall by rule establish a facility fee that a
  physician consulting from a distant site and receiving
  reimbursement under Subsection (c-1) must pay a health professional
  present with the patient.
         (c-3)  In adopting rules under Subsection (c-2), the
  commission shall confer with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid
  Services on the legality of allocating reimbursement or
  establishing a facility fee as described in that subsection.  Rules
  adopted by the commission under this subsection or Subsection (c-2)
  must reflect a policy to build capacity in medically underserved
  areas of this state.
         SECTION 2.  Subsections (i) and (j), Section 531.02175,
  Government Code, as added by Chapter 370, Acts of the 79th
  Legislature, Regular Session, 2005, are amended to read as follows:
         (i)  Not later than September 1, 2008 [December 1, 2006], the
  commission shall submit a report to the legislature regarding the
  results of the pilot program. The report must include
  recommendations regarding elimination, continuation, or expansion
  of the pilot program.
         (j)  This section expires September 1, 2009 [2007].
         SECTION 3.  If before implementing any provision of this Act
  a state agency determines that a waiver or other authorization from
  a federal agency is necessary for implementation, the agency
  affected by the provision shall request the waiver or authorization
  and may delay implementing that provision until the waiver or
  authorization is granted.
         SECTION 4.  (a)  Section 1 of this Act takes effect
  September 1, 2007.
         (b)  Except as provided by Subsection (a) of this section,
  this Act takes effect immediately if it receives a vote of
  two-thirds of all the members elected to each house, as provided by
  Section 39, Article III, Texas Constitution.  If this Act does not
  receive the vote necessary for immediate effect, this Act takes
  effect August 27, 2007.
  ______________________________ ______________________________
     President of the Senate Speaker of the House     
         I hereby certify that S.B. No. 24 passed the Senate on
  March 28, 2007, by the following vote:  Yeas 30, Nays 0.
  Secretary of the Senate    
         I hereby certify that S.B. No. 24 passed the House on
  May 17, 2007, by the following vote:  Yeas 141, Nays 0, two
  present not voting.
  Chief Clerk of the House