SSB 5121
As Passed Senate, February 1, 2023
Title: An act relating to the joint select committee on health care and behavioral health oversight.
Brief Description: Establishing the joint select committee on health care and behavioral health oversight.
Sponsors: Senate Committee on Health & Long Term Care (originally sponsored by Senator Cleveland).
Brief History:
Committee Activity: Health & Long Term Care: 1/12/23, 1/13/23 [DPS].
Floor Activity: Passed Senate: 2/1/23, 48-0.
Brief Summary of First Substitute Bill
  • Establishes the Joint Select Committee on Health Care and Behavioral Health Oversight with an expiration date of December 31, 2026. 
Majority Report: That Substitute Senate Bill No. 5121 be substituted therefor, and the substitute bill do pass.
Signed by Senators Cleveland, Chair; Robinson, Vice Chair; Rivers, Ranking Member; Muzzall, Assistant Ranking Member; Conway, Dhingra, Holy, Padden, Randall and Van De Wege.
Staff: Andie Parnell (786-7439)

The Joint Select Committee on Health Care Oversight (Committee) was created in 2013.

The Committee's membership consists of the chairs of the Health Care Committees of the Senate and the House of Representatives.  The two largest political party leaders in the Senate and two largest political party leaders in the House of Representatives, each appoint two members to the Committee.  The Governor may also appoint a nonvoting member as a liaison to the Committee.

The Committee provides oversight between the Health Care Authority, Health Benefit Exchange, the Office of the Insurance Commissioner, the Department of Health, and the Department of Social and Health Services.  This oversight includes monitoring each agency's activities to ensure they are not duplicating their efforts and are working towards the goal of increased quality of services which will lead to reduced costs to the health care consumer.  The Committee also, as necessary, proposes legislation and budget recommendations to the Legislature.

Summary of First Substitute Bill:

The expiration date for the Joint Select Committee on Health Care and Behavioral Health Oversight is changed from December 31, 2022, to December 31, 2026.

Appropriation: None.
Fiscal Note: Not requested.
Creates Committee/Commission/Task Force that includes Legislative members: No.
Effective Date: Ninety days after adjournment of session in which bill is passed.
Staff Summary of Public Testimony on Original Bill:

The committee recommended a different version of the bill than what was heard. PRO: Legislative oversight is necessary to know what health care agencies are doing throughout the year. The health care system is also unaffordable, causing individuals to go bankrupt or avoid treatment because of health care costs. The joint select committee should remain functioning in order to keep the Legislature informed and address health care affordability. The name of the committee should also include behavioral health to reflect the work the state has done integrating physical health and behavioral health.

Persons Testifying: PRO: Senator Annette Cleveland, Prime Sponsor; Jim Freeburg; Eileen Cody, self.
Persons Signed In To Testify But Not Testifying: No one.