Governor Mark Dayton and Legislative leaders this morning signed an agreement outlining the terms of a special session to complete the budget. The Governor has signed a proclamation calling the Minnesota Legislature into a special session beginning at 3:00 p.m. this afternoon. In the agreement the House and Senate agree to a two day session, to take up twelve budget bills with no amendments to be allowed. So far, only seven of these bills has been made public.
A link to the joint announcement by the Governor and Republican leadership is attached: http://mn.gov/governor/multimedia/pdf/20110719_letter.pdf
Health and Human Services
While the bill has not yet been released, the HHS Chairs held a press conference to announce some of the provisions of their bill. The bill will spend $11.3 billion over the biennium which represents an 11.6% increase over current spending. Of note to providers is that the bill calls for the elimination of the provider tax in 2019 and the Health Care Access Commission. On the down side it calls for 1-3% rate cuts, and we have also learned it eliminates funding for the Donated Dental Services Program.
These items are subject to change once we are able to fully review the legislation so we will keep you up to date.
Reminder that Fair Dental Contracting Law takes effect on August 1
The MDA has been fielding calls from dentists in regard to the non-covered services section of the fair dental contracting law.
An important item to take note of is that the law takes effect on August 1 and applies to dental plans and provider agreements entered into or renewed on or after that date. If you are currently reviewing a contract or considering a new one, you should review the contract carefully to determine the contract’s effective date and whether the new non-covered services law will apply to that contract.
The Non Covered Services portion of the new law is below:
Payment for covered services. (a) No contract of any dental plan or dental organization that covers any dental services or dental provider agreement with a dentist may require, directly or indirectly, that a dentist provide services to an enrolled participant at a fee set by, or at a fee subject to the approval of, the dental plan or dental organization unless the dental services are covered services. (b) A dental plan or dental organization or other person providing third-party administrator services shall not make available any providers in its dentist network to a plan that sets dental fees for any services except covered services. (c) "Covered services" means dental care services for which a reimbursement is available under an enrollee's plan contract, or for which a reimbursement would be available but for the application of contractual limitations such as deductibles, co-payments, coinsurance, waiting periods, annual or lifetime maximums, frequency limitations, alternative benefit payments, or any other limitation.