Will Consolidation of Licensing Boards Save Money?

Whoa, it pays to open emails occasionally!  I missed this discussion from the Texas Nurses Association NurseWatch email newsletter from the TNA Governmental Affairs department.  Basically, Governor Perry proposed consolidation of nine (9) healthcare related licensing boards in order to save $7M per biennium.  This would have included both the Medical Board and TBON.  Needless to say I think this is a terrible idea, even if I have my disagreements with TBON as it is currently constituted.  It would be much worse, primarily because it would be physician driven (I am pretty sure this would happen, even if not overtly.  However, as the story states, no bills have been filed, so this is not likely this session.  The article after the jump:

Governor Perry proposes agency consolidation
In his proposed budget, Governor Perry discusses consolidating nine health licensing agencies into one single agency called the Health Professions Agency. Governor Perry said this will save the State of Texas $7 million. The governor did not give any details on how this would be accomplished.  Consolidation of health professional boards has been proposed several times in previous sessions. The proposals have ranged from creating a “super agency” to consolidation of only certain functions such as IT, HR and Finance. Governor Perry listed the agencies he is proposing to consolidate.

1.    Texas Board of Nursing
2.    Texas Medical Board
3.    Texas State Board of Pharmacy
4.    Texas State Board of Dental Examiners
5.    Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists’
6.    Texas Optometry Board
7.    Texas State Board of Podiatric Medical Examiners
8.    Texas Board of Chiropractic Examiners
9.    Executive Council of Physical Therapy & Occupational Therapy Examiners

Despite Governor Perry’s discussion of this concept in his proposed budget, at this time no bill has been filed that would consolidate these agencies. The BON is one of the largest licensing agencies in the state and regulates the greatest number of people. As more information becomes available, we will let you know.

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