Public testimony on SB 1803 was held on Tuesday, April 30th, before the House Human Services Committee. The House sponsor of the bill was no less that the chair of the House Public Health Committee Lois Kolkhorst.
Again a number of dental Medicaid providers testified about their horrendous experiences with the Office of the Inspector General and investigations into their practices, including Dr. Juan Villarreal who is on the board of TDMR, and who has been the only dentist so far to get a payment hold hearing at SOHA at which OIG’s allegations of fraud were determined to be unfounded.
Also testifying in favor of SB 1803 was Dr. John Holcomb, representing the Texas Medical Association. Dr. Jose Cazares representing the Texas Dental Association and the Texas Academy of General Dentistry joined the chorus of those in favor of passage of the bill.
Chuck Young, Director of Communications and Hugo Berlango, TDMR’s legislative consultant, also gave extensive testimony. Young, the last person to testify, brought forward further whistleblower information, building on the testimony of Fread Houston, former Director of Sanctions at OIG, before the same committee a few weeks ago, that TDMR had received about internal problems at OIG. House Committee Chair Richard Peña Raymond made a number of comments about the need for whistleblower protection while Rep. Kolkhorst was closing the hearing on the bill. Shortly afterwards, Douglas Wilson, the Inspector General, showed up and addressed the committee.
Here are the videos of the testimony that are also on TDMR’s YouTube channel. Please subscribe.
Dr. Juan Villarreal
Dr. Everett Evans
Dr. Behzad Nazari
Dr. Jose Cazares representing the Texas Dental Assocation and the Texas Academy of General Dentistry.
Dr. John Holcomb representing the Texas Medical Association.
Dr. Robert Anderton
Chuck Young TDMR Director of Communications
Hugo Berlango TDMR’s Legislative Consultant.