The 2015 Legislature has adjourned in Arkansas and considered a number of health related measures. The most high profile bill continued the “Private Option” allowing hundreds of thousands of residents to retain their private health coverage.
First passed in 2013, the Private Option has allowed Arkansas to have one of the sharpest declines of uninsured residents in the country, as well as helped to reduce the number of costly emergency room visits. This bill (SB 101) will now head over to the House of Representatives for consideration.
Another bill supported by the American Heart Association was HB 1465 which would have helped improve stroke care in Arkansas. While this bill did not pass it did receive a committee hearing with favorable testimony from AHA volunteers and the medical community.
We are hopeful the Legislature will choose to study this issue further during the interim and enact similar legislation next year.