Legislative Preview
Update # 9
February 26, 2021

Paul D. Seltzer, DO, Legislative Chair
Stephen R. Winn, ED
Michelle W. Larson, Assoc. ED
Jason D. Winn, Esq.
Summary
FOMA General Counsel Jason Winn and Executive Director Steve Winn met with State Senator Doug Broxson, to discuss issues relating to the 2021 Legislative Session. Senator Broxson serves as Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Education and Vice Chair of the Banking and Insurance Committee.
Legislators took the week off in preparation for the start of the 2021 Legislative Session, scheduled to begin on March 2, 2021. COVID-19 will take the center stage as legislators work to unravel the impact of the illness on Florida’s health care system, business growth and development and overall impact to the State’s economy. Liability protections for businesses and health care providers, vaccinations, telehealth and expanding the scope of practice for pharmacists are key healthcare issues before the legislature based on their movement throughout the interim committee process.   

While some COVID legislation is necessary, the FOMA continues to monitor bills filed as Trojan Horses, designed to expand the scope of practice under the guise of responding to the needs of the pandemic. Several scope bills have been filed; many are citing claims relating to COVID as an excuse for lowering the current standard of care. The FOMA believes the physician led interdisciplinary model is the only clinically proven system for delivering safe and efficacious care. Expanding the scope of advanced nurse practitioners, to allow for independent specialty practice, is a clear departure from the high-level educational and training standards patients rely on for competent and safe care.

In conjunction with our partner patient advocacy groups, the FOMA is working diligently to expand access to needed medications and health care services.  Several bills relating to step-therapy and retroactive denial of claims have been filed.  We will keep you posted as to their progress.  

Please continue to contribute to FOMA-Pac in support of our ongoing efforts to pass meaningful patient-centered healthcare legislation.  

Please contact the FOMA Governmental Relations office for assistance at govaffairs@foma.org or call 850-878-7364. The Florida Legislature has implemented COVID-19 protocols so please review this memo for details and instructions on how to register. 
The FOMA Supports Healthcare Provider
COVID Liability Protections
SB 74 limits civil claims against health care providers related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The bill requires that the initial complaint in a COVID-19-related lawsuit be pled with particularity. Under the measure, a trial court must dismiss a case if not pled with particularity. As drafted, the bill requires the claimant to prove that the health care provider was grossly negligent or engaged in intentional misconduct in failing to substantially comply with government health standards or guidance. Additionally, a health care provider is immune from civil liability if supplies or personnel were not readily available to comply with the standards or guidance. A COVID-19-related claim against a health care provider must be commenced within 1 year.
HB 7005 provides heightened liability protections to health care entities for negligence claims by patients and residents arising under existing laws governing medical malpractice and long-term care facility litigation related to COVID-19.

A plaintiff must prove by a preponderance of the evidence that a defendant was grossly negligent, reckless or committed intentional misconduct to recover under these COVID-19-related medical claims, thus immunizing providers from acts that constitute mere negligence. The bill provides an affirmative defense for defendants who complied with applicable government-issued COVID-19 guidance.

The bill also provides, that a health care provider making a good faith effort to substantially comply with applicable COVID-19 guidance is immune from these negligence claims
The FOMA Supports Expanding Access to Medications and Healthcare Services
SB 0528 Health Insurance Prior Authorization by Harrell

Health Insurance Prior Authorization; Prohibiting health maintenance organizations from excluding coverage for certain cancer treatment drugs; specifying requirements for, and restrictions on, health insurers and pharmacy benefits managers relating to prior authorization information, requirements, restrictions, and changes; requiring health insurers to provide and disclose procedures for insureds to request exceptions to step-therapy protocols; prohibiting health maintenance organizations from imposing an additional prior authorization requirement with respect to certain surgical or invasive procedures or certain items, etc. Effective Date: 1/1/2022

SB 1392 Health Insurance Coverage for Cancer Treatment by Harrell

Health Insurance Coverage for Cancer Treatment; Defining the terms “associated condition” and “health care provider”; prohibiting health maintenance organizations from excluding coverage for certain cancer treatment drugs; prohibiting health insurers and health maintenance organizations from requiring, before providing prescription drug coverage for the treatment of stage 4 metastatic cancer and associated conditions, that treatment has failed with a different drug, etc. Effective Date: 1/1/2022

SB 1388 Payment of Health Insurance Claims by Harrell

Payment of Health Insurance Claims; Prohibiting health insurers, at any time, from retroactively denying a claim because of the ineligibility of the insured if the insurer verified the insured’s eligibility at the time of treatment or provided an authorization number; prohibiting health maintenance organizations, at any time, from retroactively denying a claim because of the ineligibility of the subscriber if the health maintenance organization verified the subscriber’s eligibility at the time of treatment or provided an authorization number, etc. Effective Date: 1/1/2022
HB 0851 Retroactive Denial of Health Care Claims by Valdes

Retroactive Denial of Health Care Claims: Prohibits individual health insurers & health maintenance organizations from retroactively denying claim because of insured & subscriber ineligibility at any time under certain circumstances. Effective Date: January 1, 2022
HB 1001 Step-therapy Protocols by Willhite

Step-therapy Protocols: Revises circumstances under which step-therapy protocols may not be required; limits types of health insurers that may not require step-therapy protocol; requires health insurers & HMOs to grant or deny protocol exemption requests & respond to appeals within specified timeframes; provides requirements for granting & denying protocol exemption requests; authorizes health insurers & HMOs to request specified documentation. Effective Date: July 1, 2021

SB 1290 Step-therapy Protocols by Hooper

Step-therapy Protocols; Revising the circumstances under which step-therapy protocols may not be required; requiring health insurers to grant or deny protocol exemption requests and respond to appeals within specified timeframes; requiring health maintenance organizations to grant or deny protocol exemption requests and respond to appeals within specified timeframes; providing requirements for granting and denying protocol exemption requests, etc. Effective Date: 7/1/2021

HB 1021 Drug Coverage for the Treatment of Cancer by Tant

Drug Coverage for the Treatment of Cancer: Prohibits health insurers & HMOs from requiring insureds & subscribers to meet certain requirements before drugs prescribed for stage 4 cancer & associated conditions are covered; prohibits health insurers & HMOs from excluding such drugs on specified ground; provides coverage for certain medically necessary services; prohibits health insurers & HMOs from requiring administration of cancer medication through home infusion. Effective Date: July 1, 2021

HB 1439 Prior Authorization for Prescription Drugs and Medical Services by Skidmore

Drug Coverage for the Treatment of Cancer: Prohibits health insurers & HMOs from requiring insureds & subscribers to meet certain requirements before drugs prescribed for stage 4 cancer & associated conditions are covered; prohibits health insurers & HMOs from excluding such drugs on specified ground; provides coverage for certain medically necessary services; prohibits health insurers & HMOs from requiring administration of cancer medication through home infusion. Effective Date: July 1, 2021

SB 1846 Health Insurance Prior Authorization by Polsky

Health Insurance Prior Authorization; Requiring health insurers and pharmacy benefit managers to establish an online electronic prior authorization process by a certain date; requiring all prior authorization requests to health insurers and pharmacy benefit managers to be made using such online electronic prior authorization process by a certain date; deleting provisions requiring prior authorization forms to be approved by the Financial Services Commission under certain circumstances; specifying requirements for, and restrictions on, health insurers and pharmacy benefit managers relating to prior authorization information, requirements, restrictions, and changes; prohibiting health insurers and health maintenance organizations, respectively, from imposing an additional prior authorization requirement with respect to certain surgical or invasive procedures or certain items, etc. Effective Date: 7/1/2021
Motor Vehicle Insurance Legislation - PIP
SB 0054 Motor Vehicle Insurance by Burgess

Motor Vehicle Insurance; Repealing provisions which comprise the Florida Motor Vehicle No-Fault Law; revising the motor vehicle insurance coverages that an applicant must show to register certain vehicles with the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles; providing alternative minimum liability insurance coverage requirements for certain motor vehicle owners or operators; revising financial responsibility requirements for owners or lessees of for-hire passenger transportation vehicles; prohibiting certain practices by motor vehicle repair shops or motor vehicle glass repair facilities with respect to the replacement or repair of motor vehicle windshields, etc. APPROPRIATION: $83,651 Effective Date: Except as otherwise expressly provided in this act and except for this section, which shall take effect upon this act becoming a law, this act shall take effect January 1, 2022
HB 0273 Motor Vehicle Insurance Coverage Exclusions by Plakon

Motor Vehicle Insurance Coverage Exclusions: Provides private passenger motor vehicle policies may exclude identified individuals from specified coverages; provides exceptions. Effective Date: July 1, 2021
HB 0719 Motor Vehicle Insurance by Grall

Motor Vehicle Insurance: Repeals provisions relating Florida Motor Vehicle No-Fault Law; revises garage liability insurance requirements; revises minimum coverage requirements for proof of financial responsibility for motor vehicles; revises amount of certificate of deposit required to elect certain method of proof of financial responsibility; revises excess liability coverage requirements; revises financial responsibility requirements for owners or lessees of for-hire passenger transportation vehicles; revises coverages of motor vehicle policy which are subject to stacking prohibition; revises insurance requirements for transportation network companies or TNC drivers or vehicle owners. Effective Date: January 1, 2022
SB 0420 Motor Vehicle Insurance Coverage Exclusions by Hooper

Motor Vehicle Insurance Coverage Exclusions; Providing that private passenger motor vehicle policies may exclude certain identified individuals from specified coverages under certain circumstances; providing that such policies may not exclude coverage under certain circumstances, etc. Effective Date: 7/1/2021

The FOMA Opposes the Following
Bills Expanding Scope of Practice
HB 0111 Autonomous Practice by an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse by Maggard

SB 0160 Prescriptive Authority Certification for Psychologists by Brandes

SB 0424 Autonomous Practice by Advanced Practice Registered Nurses by Brandes

HB 0431 Practice of Physician Assistants by Rommel

HB 0631 Optometry by Rizo

HB 0687 Prescriptive Authority Certification for Psychologists by Alexander

SB 0876 Optometry by Diaz

SB 0894 Physician Assistants by Diaz

HB 1299 Autonomous Physician Assistants by Rizo
Bill Tracking
Please see the link below containing a list of all legislation filed to date. Let us know if you have any specific areas of interest or concern.

Legislative Session Calendar - Week 1
Monday Mar 1, 2021


H Judiciary Committee           17 H     2:00PM-4:00PM
             
HB 0009          Protecting Consumers Against Fraud During a Pandemic     
 
 
Tuesday Mar 2, 2021


H Finance & Facilities Subcommittee            102 H   1:00PM-2:30PM
            
 HB 0309         Dementia-related Staff Training         
 HB 0701         Behavioral Health Care Services Coverage and Access          
 HB 1067         Health Care Expenses 
 
S Commerce and Tourism      110 S   1:30PM-3:30PM
            
 SB 0072          Civil Liability for Damages Relating to COVID-19    
 
S Judiciary       412 K   1:30PM-3:30PM
            
 SB 0582          Parental Rights     
 
Health & Human Services Committee          212 K   4:00PM-5:00PM         
 
HB 0241          Parents' Bill of Rights
 
H Pandemics & Public Emergencies Committee       404 H   4:00PM-6:00PM         

HB 7005          Civil Liability for Covid-19-Related Claims Against Certain ...  
 
S Children, Families, and Elder Affairs          37 S     4:00PM-6:00PM         

 SB 0130          Mental Health and Substance Use Disorders 
 SB 0804          Substance Abuse Services      
 
S Education     412 K   4:00PM-6:00PM         
 
SB 0170           Podiatric Medicine      
 
 
Wednesday Mar 3, 2021        


S Banking and Insurance        412 K   9:30AM-11:30AM
            
 SB 0420          Motor Vehicle Insurance Coverage Exclusions           
 
S Health Policy           412 K   12:00PM-2:00PM       
 
 SB 0404          Office of Minority Health and Health Equity  Rouson  
 SB 0074          COVID-19-related Claims Against Health Care Providers       
 SB 0876          Optometry      
 
S Appropriations Subcommittee on Health and Human Services   412 K   2:30PM-4:00PM
            
 SB 0272          Rare Disease Advisory Council  
 SB 0340          Supermajority Vote Required to Enact a Single-payor Healthcare...
 SB 0348          Medicaid   
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