Senator Jane Nelson
P.O. Box 12068, State Capitol
Austin, Texas 78711
Tel. (512) 463-0112
Fax (512) 463-0923

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 18, 2004
Contact: Dave Nelson
(817) 424-3446 or
Toni Xenos, AMA,
(312) 464-5557

Senator Nelson Receives Prestigious Health Advocacy Award

GRAPEVINE - Senator Jane Nelson, R-Lewisville, will visit our nation's capitol next week to receive the prestigious Nathan Davis Award for Outstanding Government Service from the American Medical Association. The award honors her lifetime achievements in public health advocacy, and Senator Nelson is the first female State Senator from Texas to receive the award.

"It is an incredible honor to receive this award," Senator Nelson said. "Our health, like the air we breathe, is easy to take for granted. It is our job as elected officials to look beyond the dollars and cents of our state health care services and explore ways to empower patients to take control of their health care. The system needs to be more patient oriented, which is why we took steps last session to reform the HMO billing bureaucracy, restructure our medical liability system and add new measures to ensure patient safety."

As Chairman of the Senate Committee on Health & Human Services, Senator Nelson is a strong advocate for Texas patients. She has authored Texas' first comprehensive medical privacy law; fought for HMO reform; worked to promote breast & cervical cancer awareness; advocated against teen tobacco & drug use; and wrote the law returning PE to the school day in Texas in the fight against child obesity.

During the most recent legislative session she fought for medical tort reform to prevent precious health care dollars from being diverted to fight frivolous lawsuits. She also passed a "prompt pay" law to help resolve billing and disputes in the health care providers and insurance companies.

Dr. Charles W. Bailey Jr., President of the Texas Medical Association, commenting on Senator Nelson's award, said that "Over the past ten years, Senator Nelson has played an exemplary role, passing sweeping legislative reforms that guarantee all Texans access to quality and affordable health care while protecting their privacy and the confidentiality of the patient-physician relationship."

Senator Nelson is Chairman of the Senate Committee on Health & Human Services and represents District 12, which includes part of Tarrant and Denton counties.

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