Law Restricting New Ownership of Ambulatory Surgery Centers

Governor Christie signed into law on January 16, 2016, a bill requiring certain surgical practices and ambulatory care facilities licensed in New Jersey to be owned by hospitals or medical schools located in the state.

New Jersey Bill Tracker

Medication Management Coverage

S-1175, a bill requiring the coverage of medication therapy management services under Medicaid and NJ FamilyCare, was reported favorably out of the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee, with amendments, on February 29, 2016. The bill was referred to the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee for further consideration.

Ambulatory Care Facilities

S-1710, a bill allowing ambulatory care facilities, including federally qualified health centers, to provide integrated primary health care services, including behavioral health care services, under a single license, was reported out of the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee, with amendments, on February 29, 2016. Authorized treatment services under the bill would include, but would not be limited to, assessment and evaluation; referral, linkage, and follow-up; individual, group, and family therapy; psychiatric evaluation; medication services; and medication monitoring. The bill will now be considered by the full Senate.

Hepatitis C Testing

On February 29, 2016, the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee favorably reported S-1279 out of committee, with amendments. The bill, as amended, requires hospitals and health care professionals who are not employed by nursing homes or other long-term care facilities to offer hepatitis C testing to individuals born between 1945 and 1965. It also requires nursing homes and other long-term care facilities, as well as the health care professionals employed thereby, to offer to arrange for the provision of hepatitis C testing to individuals born between 1945 and 1965, either by setting up a screening test appointment with an appropriate health care professional or general hospital, or by arranging for a mobile laboratory or other laboratory site to provide the screening test. The bill will be considered by the full Senate.

Behavioral Health Reimbursement

S-1730, a bill increasing Medicaid reimbursement rates for certain evidence-based behavioral health services under the state Medicaid program, was reported favorably out of the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee, with amendments, on February 29, 2016. Under the bill, reimbursement rates could be no less than the market rate for the service, provided that the service meets certain criteria. The bill has been referred to the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee for its consideration.

Ambulatory Surgical Centers

A-3101, a bill authorizing surgical practices registered with the Department of Health to convert to an ambulatory surgery facility, combine with an existing ambulatory care facility to expand the services offered through that facility, or allow a nonprofit hospital or an entity owned in part by a nonprofit hospital to acquire a joint ownership interest in the facility, was reported out of the Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee on February 22, 2016. The bill additionally permits two or more licensed ambulatory surgical facilities to combine.  The bill will now be considered by the full Assembly.

Laboratory Supervision

S-976, a bill revising the requirements concerning supervision of bio-analytical laboratories to require that the laboratories be under the overall management and direction of either a licensed physician or a licensed bio- analytical laboratory director who is accessible to the laboratory to provide on-site, telephone, or electronic consultation as needed, was reported favorably out of the Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee on February 22, 2016. The bill was previously passed by the Senate and awaits a vote in the Assembly before being sent to the governor.