‘Technical’ health law changes OK’d _lowres

Scott Simon

State Rep. Scott Simon on Wednesday won approval of legislation making technical changes in the state’s health care laws.

But Simon first agreed to hold off any substantive changes to the 132-page bill as it moves through the legislative process.

The first section of the legislation, House Bill 667, deals with a consolidation of abortion statutes and some abortion rights supporters were suspicious about what the bill could contain.

“Over the years we have put new laws in and taken things out … Over the years things have gotten jumbled around,” said Simon, who chairs the House Health and Welfare Committee.

Simon said his committee staff suggested the reorganization so it would be easier to find different parts of the laws dealing with health care subjects ranging from Medicaid to children and public health. “If anyone sees any substantive change, it was by happenstance,” said Simon, R-Abita Springs.

State Rep. Regina Barrow, D-Baton Rouge, sought assurance from Simon that he would not accept any substantive changes and leave it as a technical “clean-up” bill.

“I have no ambition to do anything with this bill other than what it is set out to do,” said Simon.

The House panel approved the measure which “reorganizes and recodifies the Miscellaneous Health Provisions chapter” of state law. The bill now heads to the House floor for debate.