Pending Bills of Concern

 

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Pending Bills of Concern in Committee – July 2016

Each of these 3 bills raises health and safety concerns as to who would be allowed to administer emergency medication(s) to students in our schools! Please contact the following legislators with your concerns:

 

1) Bill H. 415, An Act Relative to Emergency Stock Epinephrine in Schools

https://malegislature.gov/Bills/189/House/H415

 

Health Care Finance Committee

MSNO has concerns with HB. 415, An Act relative to emergency stock epinephrine in schools which references who, within a school district, would administer epinephrine to a student experiencing a life threatening allergic reaction without a previous medical diagnosis of a life threatening allergy. In addition, we call into question the mandate in HB. 415 which requires that the number of auto injectors of epinephrine in a school be based on school/student population. Although Section 2 of this bill references efforts to be made to obtain federal funding or reimbursement for purchase of auto injectors of epinephrine, this mandate would be construed as and would actually be yet another challenging unfunded mandate for schools across the Commonwealth.

 

Health Care Finance Committee Chairs for H. 415
  • Representative Jeffrey Sanchez – State House, Room 236, Boston, MA 02133
  • Senator James Welch – State House Room 216A, Boston, MA 02133

 

2) Bill H.1902, An Act Relative to Emergency Epinephrine Pens in Schools – ***This Bill has not moved forward as a result of effective advocacy for student safety by MSNO***

https://malegislature.gov/Bills/189/House/H1902

MSNO had concerns regarding HB.1902, An Act relative to emergency epinephrine pens in schools. We took issue with language in the bill that references who may administer epinephrine to a student believed to be having an anaphylactic reaction, storage of an epinephrine kit in a locked secure accessible location and consultation with and supervisory responsibility for maintaining the epinephrine kit by a pharmacist licensed by the state board of pharmacy.
Public Health Committee Chairs for H. 1902
  • Senator Jason M. Lewis, State House Room 511B, Boston, MA 02133
  • Representative Kate Hogan, State House Room 130, Boston, MA 02133

We also strongly urge you to notify your district MTA contacts as well so that they are aware of these pending pieces of legislation that could potentially become law!!!

 

3) Bill S.2252, An Act relative to the administration of diabetes medication (recently amended by the Education Committee)

https://malegislature.gov/Bills/189/Senate/S2252

Health Care Finance

MSNO has concerns regarding S. 2252, An Act relative to the administration of diabetes. Our concerns re the language in this amended bill refer to: the referenced DESE ”training” of school personnel in the administration of a Glucagon – also subject to appropriation; the option to develop of School Committee Policy; and requiring DPH and DESE to develop guidelines re to these trainings – where unlicensed personnel will then be allowed to administer this medication in the school setting.

SECTION 1. Section 54B of chapter 71 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2014 Official Edition, is hereby amended by inserting at the end thereof the following paragraph:- Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary, the department of elementary and secondary education and department of public health shall, subject to appropriation, jointly provide training for school employees in the emergency administration of glucagon for students with diabetes. A school committee of any city, town or regional school district may adopt a policy allowing for the administration of glucagon by trained members of the school staff when a nurse is not present and the student exhibits symptoms of severe hypoglycemia; provided, however, that the parent or legal guardian of the student has submitted in writing permission for such emergency treatment to be rendered; and provided further that a member of the school staff who, in good faith, administers glucagon to a student who exhibits symptoms of severe hypoglycemia shall not be held liable in a suit for damages as a result of his acts or omissions, nor shall such person be subject to any disciplinary action for such emergency aid. The department of elementary and secondary education, in consultation with the department of public health, shall develop guidelines for the emergency administration of glucagon by a trained member of the school staff.

MAY 31, 2016 Additional Legislative Amendments/Updates

Children’s Mental Health Amendments: 4 amendments to the Senate Budget were filed by Senator Flanagan – vital to children’s mental health.
1) Amendment #389 Early Childhood MH Consultation: DEEC Line Item (3000-6075)| Senator Flanagan
In FY2007, line item 3000-6075 was created in the MA Department of Early Education and Care (DEEC) budget to address the issue of preschool suspensions and expulsions and the social-emotional/behavioral problems of young children in childcare programs. The consultative services funded by this line item help educators and families to understand and respond appropriately to challenging behavior in young children, reduce suspensions and expulsions, and improve school readiness skills.
In calendar year 2015, close to 2,500 educators in 566 childcare programs in 178 cities/towns received more than 8,000 hours of consultation services. These services created a more stable learning environment for more than 12,000 students. The preschool expulsion rate is less than 1%.
FY2017 funding request: Increase funding from $750,000 in the FY16 budget to $1,125,000. This line item has been in the budget since 2007 and was funded at $2.4m in FY08 and FY09.
Amendment #389 Early Childhood MH Consultation: DEEC Line Item (3000-6075)| Senator Flanagan
In FY2007, line item 3000-6075 was created in the MA Department of Early Education and Care (DEEC) budget to address the issue of preschool suspensions and expulsions and the social-emotional/behavioral problems of young children in childcare programs. The consultative services funded by this line item help educators and families to understand and respond appropriately to challenging behavior in young children, reduce suspensions and expulsions, and improve school readiness skills.
In calendar year 2015, close to 2,500 educators in 566 childcare programs in 178 cities/towns received more than 8,000 hours of consultation services. These services created a more stable learning environment for more than 12,000 students. The preschool expulsion rate is less than 1%.
FY2017 funding request: Increase funding from $750,000 in the FY16 budget to $1,125,000. This line item has been in the budget since 2007 and was funded at $2.4m in FY08 and FY09.
Amendment #390 Early Childhood MH Partnership: DMH line item 5042-5000 | Senator Flanagan
 
The Department of Mental Health and the Department of Early Education and Care have begun a collaborative effort to improve behavioral health services and supports for very young children. In FY 2017 these efforts will bring additional focus to;
  • increasing capabilities within the ECMH consultation network to meet the needs of early child care centers;
  • development of  strategies for identifying children most at risk for mental and behavioral health challenges and intervening earlier (and by extension, reducing the likelihood of their expulsion or suspension from early child care settings)
  • providing training opportunities for pediatricians, Children’s Behavioral Health Initiative providers and other community based professionals who provide behavioral health services to very young children and their families.
FY 2017 funding request: $50,000 to support the activities of the collaboration.
Amendment # 500 NAS/SEN Task Force: Senator Jennifer Flanagan
 
This amendment will establish an inter-agency task-force on newborns with neonatal abstinence syndrome and substance exposed newborns. The group will develop a unified statewide plan to coordinate care and services and achieve data, quality, and outcome goals for newborns and young children impacted by exposure to substances. For more information on the amendment, click here!
Amendment #585 Restore the Substance Abuse Trust Fund: 1595-4510 |Senator Flanagan
This amendment will restore the Substance Abuse Trust Fund at $5 million to preserve existing services including:
  • Programs to place recovery coaches in emergency departments.
  • Opioid Urgent Care Centers
  • Improvements to the BSAS Helpline
  • 3 new Recovery Centers
  • Funding for Learn to Cope
  • Funding for the Massachusetts Organization for Addiction Recovery