News and Policy Updates

  • 15 Jul 2015 10:47 AM | Lara Marsh (Administrator)

    Two bills passed for Nurse Practitioners. Click here to download a PDF of the summary document for 2015.

     

  • 08 Jul 2015 10:18 AM | Lara Marsh (Administrator)

    In this issue:

    ·         IDPH Legislative Package Summary

    ·         Final Action: HHS Appropriations Bill

    ·         A link to a list of the enacted bills from the 2015 session that relate to public health. There is also a link to all of the enacted bills at the end of this publication.

    2015 End of Session Update

    The first session of the 86th General Assembly came to a close on June 5. The Governor completed his actions on the 142 enrolled bills sent to him by the legislature on July 2.

     

    Thank You

    To my colleagues at IDPH, I greatly appreciate your dedication to session. I sincerely thank you for helping us through yet another one filled with successes.  It takes a village to navigate the session waters and it would be impossible to do without your hard work, subject matter expertise, flexibility, and patience. It’s an honor to represent our department. Thank you so much for the opportunity to do so. 

    To our valued stakeholders, thank you also for your support of the department’s policy and budget package. We would not have been able to achieve the successes we had this year without your help. Our partners are too numerous to name here but please know that we value our relationships with each of you and look forward to continuing our collective work to promote and protect the health of Iowans.

    Governor’s Actions

    The following is an excerpt from the Legislative Services Agency’s “How a Bill Becomes a Law.” It provides a brief explanation of the Governor’s veto powers. The full document is located here:          

    Bills passed by the Legislature must be reviewed by the Governor. The Governor takes final action on all bills passed by the Iowa General Assembly. The Governor has three options: sign the bill, veto the bill (or item veto an appropriations bill), or take no action. In the case of a veto, the Legislature may override the veto with two-thirds of the members of each chamber voting to reconsider and pass the bill a second time. If, during session, the Governor does not sign or veto a bill, it becomes law after three calendar days (except Sundays). Bills received by the Governor during the last three calendar days of session (except Sundays) must be signed or vetoed within 30 calendar days.

    The Governor has the option to use three types of vetoes: the veto, item veto, and pocket veto. The veto indicates the Governor’s disapproval of an entire bill. The item veto may be used only for bills which appropriate funds. It strikes a specific item of an appropriations bill. A pocket veto occurs when the Governor fails to take action within 30 calendar days on a bill received within the last three calendar days of session (except Sundays). The entire bill fails to become law. When the Governor vetoes or item vetoes a bill, a veto message explaining why the veto was made is delivered to the chamber of origin with the bill and is filed with the Secretary of State. The Governor’s veto messages can be accessed on the Iowa General Assembly web site in the “Enrolled Bills” section.

     

    IDPH Policy and Budget Package Recap

    IDPH Policy Package:

    • 2 out of 3 bills that were introduced by IDPH were signed by the Governor. They are as follows:
      • SF 274 IDPH Omnibus Bill. Medical Residency Program and the Board of Hearing Aid Specialists. Signed Friday, April 24.
      • HF 381 Iowa Health Information Network Transition. Biggest policy priority. Also signed April 24.
      • SF 275 Local Public Health Flexibility Bill. Died…twice. Couldn’t gain enough momentum in the House.

     

    IDPH Budget Priorities:

    • General Fund – Appropriated in SF 505 (FY 2016 and FY 2017 Health and Human Services Appropriations Act):
      • The reallocation request of $200,000 from the Cervical Cancer Screening Program to the Bureau of EMS and Trauma Systems (BETS) was achieved.
      • The increase of $1.0 million for the Medical Residency Program was not included in the final budget.
    • Rebuild Iowa Infrastructure Fund (RIIF) – Appropriated in HF 650 (FY 2016 Infrastructure Act):
      • $500,000 in FY 2016 for the Bureaus of Family Health and Oral Health Delivery Systems data integration project. Currently, five data management systems are operated by the bureaus, all of which function independently of each other. Not all are web-based and all lack the ability to easily share data among programs or with the public. These systems are aging and are costly to update and repair. This project will replace the five existing systems with a single web-based, integrated electronic data management system. Features of the new system will include case management, referral management, risk assessment, billing, and client and population-level reporting. The integrated system will support eight programs.
      • $500,000 to study the 98 database systems in IDPH for long and short term planning of replacement and consolidation strategies was not included in the final budget.

     

    Health and Human Services Appropriations Act

    SF 505 was item-vetoed by Governor Branstad on July 2. To view the item-veto letter please click here.

    The bill appropriates funding to the Departments of Public Health, Human Services, Aging, and Veterans Affairs and the Iowa Veterans Home. IDPH’s total FY 2016 General Fund budget is $57.8 million. This is a net decrease of $1.5 million compared to FY 2015. The following are new directives, new allocations, and decreases or increases in funding compared to FY 2015 in Division III, Sec. 3 of the bill:

    Addictive Disorders:

    • Tobacco Use Prevention and Control (Sec. 3(1)(a)): Received status quo funding. A new directive was added for Quitline Iowa to screen patients for third-party coverage of nicotine replacement therapy. A report is required but a due date was not assigned.
    • The tobacco-related allocation paragraphs were consolidated for increased flexibility in the determination of funded activities.

    Healthy Children and Families:

    • 1st Five Program (Sec. 3(2)(c)): Received an increase of $571,000 for a total allocation of $2.2 million. Initial estimates anticipate expansion into approximately 13 new counties for a total of 62.
    • Child Burial Grant Program (Sec. 3(2)(j)): This program was new in FY 2015 and received an allocation of $100,000 complete with carryforward authority. Significant funding is still available from that allocation hence, the legislature directs IDPH to continue to spend down the existing balance in FY 2016 instead of allocating additional funding to the program.
    • Office of Health Care Transformation (OHCT) (Sec. 3(3)(k)): Formerly identified as the allocation paragraph for the Medical Home Systems Advisory Council, the language in the allocation paragraph has been updated to accurately reflect the use of the funding for activities in the OHCT. The Council’s name was also updated in Iowa Code Sections 135.151 and 135.161 to be called the Patient-Centered Health Advisory Council. This change is made in Division VII, Sec. 38 of the bill.

    Chronic Conditions:

    • Cervical Cancer Screening Program (Sec. 3(3)(h)): Received a decrease of $200,000 as part of a reallocation request made by IDPH. The funding has been reallocated to the Public Protection budget unit for use in the IDPH Bureau of Emergency Medical Services and Trauma Systems (BETS).

    Community Capacity:

    • Iowa Collaborative Safety Net Provider Network (Sec. 3(4)(g)): The allocation paragraphs were consolidated for increased flexibility in the determination of funded activities. Received status quo funding from the legislature, however, a total of $1.6 million to be used for activities such as community care teams was vetoed by the Governor.
    • Direct Care Professional (DCP) Activities (Sec. 3(4)(h,i)): Received status quo funding. New language is included in the DCP Council’s allocation paragraph but does not appear to significantly impact the Council’s current work. A request for proposals (RFP) will be required for the funding that has been traditionally passed directly through to the Iowa CareGivers. Contract requirements are also included to use a portion of the funding to collect data to determine results based on the performance and outcomes measures included in the contract.
    • Delta Dental Loan Repayment Program (Sec. 3(4)(k)): Received an increase of $50,000 for a total of $100,000 for FY 2016.
    • Reach Out and Read Program: Funding of $50,000 was eliminated for this program.
    • University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics (UIHC), Mental Health in Primary Care Settings (Sec. 3(4)(p)): This is a new allocation for FY 2016 of $159,619 that IDPH will pass through to the UIHC. The program will provide additional training to medical residency students about mental health and psychiatric prescriptions and on how to track data and outcomes.

    Public Protection:

    • Emergency Medical Services (EMS): Increase of $200,000. Funding will support EMS activities including organizing local system/service training, data evaluation, primary system development and providing local EMS agencies assistance in capitalizing use of the system development funds; and to provide technical consultation and assistance to EMS services and providers.

    IDPH-related items under the DHS sections of the bill:

    • Eldora Juvenile Home Substance Abuse Treatment Program (Sec. 17(1)(b)): A new directive to DHS to work with IDPH to identify substance abuse programs and resources to provide appropriate treatment for juveniles with substance-related disorders at the State Training School.
    • Child Protection Centers Grant (CPC) Program (Sec. 18(11)): The allocation paragraph was amended to specify that the grant program shall only fund CPCs located in Iowa. In addition, the funding that remains after a base amount is awarded shall be awarded by a funding formula based upon the volume of children served.

    IDPH-related items in the policy sections of the bill:

    • Patient-Centered Health Advisory Council (Division VII, Secs. 38-41): Updates the name change from the Medical Homes Systems Advisory Council to the Patient-Centered Health Advisory Council that is administered by IDPH.
    • Health Policy – Oversight (Division IX, Secs. 63-66): This Division does a few things related to managed care.
      • The first is a directive to DHS to hold monthly statewide public meetings to receive input from stakeholders regarding Medicaid managed care beginning in March 2016. The Executive Committee of the Medical Assistance Advisory Council (MAAC) will review the input and make recommendations to DHS.
      • The second establishes a Legislative Health Policy Oversight Committee. This committee will consist of legislators only.
      • The third authorizes the existing Office of Long-Term Care Ombudsman to provide specified types of assistance to Medicaid enrollees that are recipients of long-term care services. This set of directives also includes a directive for a collaborative plan to develop a proposal for the establishment of a health consumer ombudsman alliance due by December 15, 2015. The Office shall work with several state agencies including IDPH.
    • Behavior Analyst and Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst Grants Program and Fund (Division X, Secs. 68-7): Creates a new program in IDPH to provide financial assistance to the aforementioned professionals that have been accepted for admission or are attending educational or training programs in preparation of becoming a board certified behavior analyst or assistant behavior analyst. An allocation of $250,000 is provided in Sec. 13(5)(a) of the bill from the DHS Autism Support Program.
    • Interagency Dementia Proficient Workforce Task Force (Division XII, Sec. 73). Directs the Department on Aging (IDA) to convene an interagency task force, that includes IDPH, and in collaboration with the Alzheimer’s Association to review several specified topics. A report is due by December 15, 2015
    • Children’s Mental Health and Well-Being Workgroup (Division XXII, Sec. 102): Directs DHS to facilitate a workgroup of stakeholders that includes IDPH, to study and make recommendations relating to children’s mental health and well-being in Iowa. A report is due by December 15, 2015.
    • Prevention of Disabilities Policy Council (Division XXIII, Sec. 103): Extends the Prevention of Disabilities Policy Council for one additional year until June 30, 2016 and requires the Council to work with DHS, IDPH, and other specified stakeholders to transfer duties to other existing groups.
    • Hospital and Long-Term Care Pharmacy Practice – Pneumococcal Vaccines (Division XXIV, Sec. 104): Directs the Board of Pharmacy to adopt administrative rules that permit the administration of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine to an adult pursuant to physician-approved hospital or facility policy without a written or verbal patient-specific medication administration order.
    • Physician Assistant Supervision (Division XXXI, Sec. 113): Requires the Boards of Medicine and Physician Assistants to jointly adopt rules that establish standards and definitions for supervision of physician assistants by physicians by February 1, 2016.
    • Board of Respiratory Care and Polysomnography (Division XXXIV, Sec. 116): Requires the Board of Respiratory Care and Polysomnography to repay and funds appropriated for the administration of Iowa Code Chapter 148G. IDPH received $36,000 from the Rebuild Iowa Infrastructure Fund (RIIF) in HF 650 (Infrastructure Appropriations Bill) for this purpose however it was vetoed by the Governor therefore this directive is moot.

     

    For FY 2017, IDPH was appropriated 50.0% of the allocated funding for FY 2016.

     

    List of 2015 Enacted Bills of Public Health Interest

    • Click here to download the publication that is a list of bills that were enacted this session that are of public health interest.
    • To view a list of all of the bills signed into law this session please click here.
  • 30 Jun 2015 12:30 PM | Lara Marsh (Administrator)

    Legislative victories just don’t happen.  The victories are a result of nurse practitioners signing up to become members of their professional organizations, either the Iowa Nurse Practitioners Society (INPS), or the Iowa Association of Nurse Practitioners (IANP).  In turn, IANP/INPS use some of their resources to hire together a lobbyist who works with legislators on issues important to nurse practitioners, keeps ARNPs updated as to what bills are being introduced, and consults with nurse practitioners as to the best strategies to get our ideas passed into law, and prevent bad ideas from being passed.

    1963

    HF 83 allowed boards of supervisors, city councils, and school boards to contract with any non-profit nurses’ association for public health nursing services.  HF 83 was signed by Governor Harold Hughes on April 4th.

    HF 554 dealt with the regulation of the practice of nursing.  It set fees for nursing exams.  $30 for the exam, and $20 if you had to retake the exam.  There was a late fee of $2 instituted if the nurse was late in renewal of the license.  HF 554 changed the chief staff person from “Secretary” to “Executive Director’ for the Board of Nursing.  The Board of Nurse Examiners was changed to the Iowa Board of Nursing in HF 554.  HF 554 was signed on May 27th.

    1973

    SF 231 appropriated $17,600 for salaries, support, maintenance, equipment and miscellaneous expenses for employees of a Governor’s Commission to study nursing in Iowa and for travel and related expenses of the commission’s members.

    1974

    SF 277 related to the establishment and administration of professional and occupational licensing boards, to abolish all trust funds and special funds of a professional and occupational licensing boards and allowing certain additional fees and providing for penalties.  For the nursing examiners’ board:


    One registered nurse from a college or university; One registered nurse from a hospital conducted school of nursing; One registered nurse from an area community or vocational tech nursing department; One registered nurse practitioner; One licensed practical nurse practitioner; and two members of the general public.

    Each association of a profession is allowed to recommend names of potential board members to the Governor who is not obligated to follow the recommendation.

    The board of nurse examiners may appoint a full time executive director who shall not be a member of the board.  The salary for the executive director will be set by the legislature.

    SF 277 was signed by Governor Robert Ray on May 28th.

    1975

    SF 123 related to the inclusion of nursing and pharmacy within the definition of professions for purposes of the Iowa Professional Corporations Act (496C.2 [1]. SF 123 was signed on March 18, 1975.

    HF 803 was a bill concerning the compensation of persons suffering loss as a result of medical malpractice.  The bill authorized the Insurance Commissioner to take steps to make sure that malpractice insurance was available to licensed health care providers.  The definition of a licensed health care provider was as follows: licensed health care provider means and includes a physician and surgeon, osteopath, osteopathic physician and surgeon, dentist, podiatrist, pharmacist, chiropractor, or nurse licensed pursuant to chapter 147 and hospitals licensed pursuant to chapter 135B.  HF 803 was signed by Governor Ray on June 30, 1975.

    1976

    HF 1503 related to the practice of nursing and provided for disciplinary procedures.  “The practice of nursing” means the practice of a registered nurse or a licensed practical nurse.  The bill outlined what nursing does not mean: basically not getting into other medical profession’s duties.  HF 1503 limited pharmacy for nursing to drugs which are recognized by the medical and nursing professions and approved by the board as proper to be performed by a registered nurse.  HF 1503 defined “practice of the profession of a registered nurse” and defined “the practice of a licensed practical nurse.”  HF 1503 stated that the Board of Nursing shall appoint a full time executive director who shall be a registered nurse.  HF 1503 was signed by Governor Ray on June 23.

    SF 387 related to liability for the performance of or refusal to perform abortions.  SF 387 provided that providers can’t be punished for refusing to participate in an abortion procedure. The bill was signed on March 19th.

    1977

    SF 312 required professional and occupational licensees, as a condition of license renewal, to participate in continuing education, delegate rulemaking authority, professional review and disciplinary action.  The Board of Nursing was included in this bill which was signed by Governor Ray on July 12.

    1980

    In 1980 the legislature passed a law, SF 2070, to allow nurse practitioners and other providers to dispense drugs, irrespective of Attorney General Tom Miller’s opinion to the contrary. Governor Ray signed the bill on May 23, 1980.

    1982

    The legislature passed HF 2430 which provided that registered nurses under chapter 152 are not required to disclose confidential communication in court proceedings. The bill was signed on May 17th.

    1983

    On April 6th, 1983, chapter 7 of the administrative rules of the Board of Nursing took effect.  This chapter governs nurse practitioners.

    HF 613 related to the funding of state agencies for designated service programs.  “It is the intent of the General Assembly that a licensed practical nurse may practice in head start programs without the need of supervision of a licensed registered nurse or a licensed physician.  To the extent that subrule 590 IAC 6.3(3) conflicts with this provision, the subrule is void.”

    HF 613 was signed by Governor Branstad on June 13th.

    1984

    SF 2262 related to health insurance by requiring that coverage for educational programs for diabetes be offered.  Nurses could do covered outpatient self-management educational programs. HF 2262 was signed on 5/16/84 by Governor Branstad.

    SF 345 specified professionals to dispense and issue prescription drugs and controlled substances and to delegate dispensing functions. Persons other than pharmacists, dentists, podiatrists, and veterinarians, cannot dispense prescription drugs or controlled substances.  PAs and RNs may supply pharmacist services when pharmacist services aren’t available or when it’s in the best interest of the patient, or on order of a physician. PAs and RNs in remote clinics may dispense drugs, but have to regularly consult with a pharmacist.

    SF 345 was signed on 2/21/84.

    SF 1287 was a bill regulating advanced emergency medical technicians and paramedics.  The Advance Emergency Care Council was created.  Positions were created for two registered nurses who were active in the delivery of emergency medical care.  The bill also provided that when physicians or registered nurses were not available to oversee the care, an EMT may do so.  SF 1287 was signed on 5/16/84.

    HF 2436 was a bill dealing with the licensure and operation of a hospice program.  RNs were listed as part of the “Interdisciplinary Team” of the hospice.  HF 2436 was signed by Governor Branstad on 5/15/84.

    SF 2334 was an appropriations bill which had the same language about head start programs that HF 613 had in 1983. “It is the intent of the General Assembly that a licensed practical nurse may practice in head start programs without the need of supervision of a licensed registered nurse or a licensed physician.  To the extent that subrule 590 IAC 6.3(3) conflicts with this provision, the subrule is void.” SF 2334 was signed on 5/18/84.

    1985

    HF 451 was a bill related to child protection….hospital and health care facility employees are added to the mandatory reporting requirements if they treat a child exhibiting signs of physical abuse – health care practitioners do direct reporting and don’t have to first report to the hospital if they work there.  HF 451 was signed by Governor Branstad on 5/23/85.

    HF 168 dealt with the licensure of dieticians….nurses were exempted from needing to obtain a dieticians’ license.  HF 168 was signed on 5/22/85.

    HF 160 removed the exception which allowed licensed practical nurses to staff an authorized ambulance service or rescue squad service.  HF 160 maintained the exception for registered nurses.  HF 160 was signed on 5/15/85.

    SF 433 was a bill on the certification and regulation of respiratory care practitioners …..the definition of “respiratory care protocols” means policies and procedures developed by an organized health care system through consultation with health care providers including certified registered nurses. SF 433 was signed on 5/20/85.

    1986

    HF 2493 related to criminal penalties arising from the operation of motor vehicles ….medical personnel, including nurses, who use reasonable care and accepted medical practices  in withdrawing blood specimens are immune from liability for their actions in complying with requests made of them pursuant to search warrants or pursuant to 321J.11.  Registered nurses are named among medical professionals who can withdraw a blood sample for determining alcoholic concentrations.  Governor Branstad signed HF 2493 on 5/27/86.

    1989

    HF 371 was a bill on emergency medical care providers….the bill added “first response service” to the list of emergency services that registered nurses are allowed to perform.  Governor Branstad signed HF 371 on 5/2/89.

    HF 774 was an appropriations bill which included a nursing loan program for $200,000.  Governor Branstad used his line item veto authority to veto this appropriation explaining that he had already asked the College Aid Commission to investigate such a program; however, he had not received full information back from the College Aid Commission as to the needed investment.

    1990

    SF 2423 was an appropriations bill on educational and cultural programs.  $225,000 was appropriated to the Iowa Department of Public Health for administering a graduate nursing program at accredited private colleges and universities, money for salaries, equipment, student services, and rural recruitment.  80% of the students had to be Iowans – all must be licensed to practice nursing in Iowa.

    HF 2518 was a professional licensure bill.  All medical professionals, including nurses, were required to keep their licenses displayed in the primary place in which the person practiced. When the nurse changed residence or place of practice, the Board of Nursing shall be notified.  HF 2518 also provided that the BON may require a recent photo of a nursing applicant.

    SF 2410 was a bill on higher education coordination, administration, standards, and funding study authorized, in coordination with the Board of Nursing.  The study included an assessment of the state’s supply of nursing educators who possess the educational qualification identified in the administrative rules, submission of any findings, and a review of the rules, and the completed study by the administrative rules review committee.  The Board of Educational Examiners was to submit the findings, along with suggested changes, to the General Assembly by July 1, 1991.

    1991

    SF 455 was a bill on dependent adult abuse.  Health practitioners, including nurses, were required to report cases of dependent adult abuse to the Department of Human Services. The bill as signed by Governor Branstad on June 4, 1991.

    HF 655 was a bill on emergency care providers.  HF 655 required hospitals to contact health care providers, including nurses, if they had been exposed to a patient with a “contagious or infectious disease.”  The bill was signed on May 9th.

    SF 363 had to do with the authority of nurse practitioners to prescribe drugs.  SF 363 gave nurse practitioners the right to prescribe non controlled substances or devices under certain circumstances.  NPs got prescriptive authority if they were registered in a recognized nursing specialty, other than nurse anesthetists, and could prescribe substances and devices, if the substances and devices were recognized by the Board of Medical Examiners and the Board of Nursing.  The drugs and devices had to be regulated under rules accepted by the Board of Medical Examiners and adopted by the Board of Nursing in consultation with the Board of Pharmacy Examiners.  Governor Branstad signed SF 363 on 6/5/91.

    SF 2 was a bill dealing with sexual exploitation by a counselor or therapist.  SF 2 provided that sexual abuse by a counselor or mental health provider, including nurses, was not a forcible felony.  SF 2 further provided that a victim had to file an action for damages within five years. SF 2 was signed on 5/8/91.

    1993

    SF 221 dealt with child abuse, dependent adult abuse, child care, and juvenile shelter care.  SF 221 stated that mental health professionals must report to the Department of Human Services any mental injury to the child’s intellectual or psychiatric capacity. SF 221 was signed on 5/3/93.

    SF 117 was a bill on children exposed to illegal drugs.  SF 117 strengthened reporting requirements to DHS by dropping the following qualifier which was in the statute: “unless the natural mother has shown good faith in seeking appropriate care and treatment.”  SF 117 further provided that positive test results can’t be used for criminal prosecution of a parent resulting in intrauterine exposure of an illegal drug. SF 117 was signed on 5/4/93.

    HF 451 was a bill on reporting to law enforcement.  HF 451 required medical professionals, including nurses, to report to law enforcement agencies stab wounds, gunshot wounds, or other serious bodily injuries to victims.  The report had to be made within a twelve hours period. HF 451 was signed on 5/4/93.

    HJR 17 was a joint resolution to nullify an administrative rule of the Board of Nursing defining the term nurse and providing an effective date.  The resolution was signed by Governor Branstad on 4/23/93.

    HF 561 related to the practices of nursing and dentistry.  The BON may appoint investigators, not members of the BON, to assist in the provisions of the law related to those licensed to practice nursing.  The investigators shall have the powers and status of peace officers when enforcing violations of chapters 147, 152, and 272C.  HF 561 was signed on 4/26/93.

    1994

    SF 2053, signed by Governor Terry Branstad on May 2, 1994, gave prescriptive authority to advanced registered nurse practitioners.

    1996

    HF 2144, signed by Governor Terry Branstad on April 25, 1996, stated that a policy or contract providing for third party payment or prepayment of health or medical expenses shall include a provision for the payment of necessary medical or surgical care and treatment provided by an advanced registered nurse practitioner.

    1999

    SF 277, signed by Governor Tom Vilsack on April 21, 1999, gave hospital clinical privileges to advanced registered nurse practitioners.

    2000

    HF 2105 established chapter 152E which is the nurse and advanced practice registered nurse compact law.  Iowa was one of the early states to join the compact whose purpose is to seek uniformity in practice for nurse around the United States and to foster reciprocity of state licenses for nurses and advanced practice nurses. Governor Tom Vilsack signed HF 2105 into law on March 16, 2000.

    2001

    Governor Tom Vilsack became the first Governor to send a letter to CMS opting out of the rule requiring physician supervision of CRNAs in performing anesthesia. In his December 12, 2001 letter, Governor Vilsack cited the fact that 91 of Iowa’s 118 hospitals relied solely on CRNAs to provide anesthesia care.

    2007

    SF 277, school nurses, signed by Governor Culver on 4/26/2007…. each school district shall have a school nurse to provide health services to its students.  Each school district shall work toward the goal of having one school nurse for every seven hundred fifty students enrolled in the school district. 

    2008

    HF 2539 passed the legislature in 2008. It related to health care reform including health care coverage intended for children and adults, health information technology, end-of-life care decision making, preexisting conditions and dependent children coverage, medical homes, prevention and chronic care management, a buy-in provision for certain individuals under the medical assistance program, disease prevention and wellness initiatives, and health care transparency. 

    HF 2151 was the bill to repeal the sunset from the ARNP compact in the code.  Without the passage of HF 2151, Iowa’s participation in the compact would have ended on July 1, 2008.  HF 2151 contains no future repeal dates.  Governor Culver signed the bill into law on March 5.  It went into effect on that date.

    HF 2603 authorized psychiatric advanced registered nurse practitioners to file certain court reports on chronic substance abusers and persons with mental illness who do not require full time placement in a treatment facility. The law requires a psychiatrist to personally evaluate the patient at least on an annual basis as part of the authorization.  Governor Culver signed the bill on April 11. 

    HF 2212 was the bill outlawing smoking in most public places.  Governor Culver signed the bill into law on April 15, 2008.

    HF 2679 contained $100,000 in funding for the registered nurse and nurse educator loan forgiveness program.

    2009

    IANP/INPS appeared at a public hearing, conducted by the Board of Nursing, on June 3, 2009, in support of the BON’s proposed rule which would make it clear that ARNPs and CRNAs have the right, after taking the requisite courses, to supervise the use of fluoroscopic x-ray equipment.  The Iowa Medical Society appeared in opposition to this proposed rule.

    2010

    HJR 2206, introduced in 2010, would have nullified the Board of Nursing’s administrative rule allowing ANRPs to provide direct supervision in the use of fluoroscopic X-ray equipment. HJR 2006 was referred to the House Judiciary Committee where Chairman Kurt Swaim refused to consider the resolution.

    SSB 3085/HF 2136 would have completely disallowed CRNAs and all nurse practitioners from doing any kind of interventional pain management.  Nurse practitioners and CRNAs were able to convince the legislature not to consider these bills in 2010.

    The Iowa Hospital Association, with support of the NP Committee, successfully amended SF 2201(section 16) so that ARNPs and PAs could be paid while credentialing was being processed and before it was completed.  SF 2201 was signed by Governor Culver on April 9th, 2010.

    HF 674 dealt with treatment of serious wounds. Medical personnel, in addition to reporting gun shot and stab wounds to law enforcement, have to report those coming in for treatment as a result of vehicle accidents, if there is something criminal to report, such as excessive alcohol.

    SF 2384  established an Iowa needs nurses now initiative.

    2011

    SF 143, signed into law on March 30th, allowed ARNPs and PAs to report on persons incapable of driving and to send in physicals indicating when the person can resume driving.

    HF 393, signed into law on April 6th, allowed ARNPs to sign death certificates. HF 393 was strongly opposed by the Iowa Medical Society.

    2012

    HF 2165 was a law relating to physician orders for scope of treatment. ARNPs were listed as part of this system of keeping clear advanced directives that accompany the patient as the patient moves from one place to another for treatments. HF 2165 passed the legislature and was signed by Governor Branstad on March 7, 2012.

    SF 2248 was a law relating to the licensed professionals authorized to prescribe respiratory care services.  This law was important because of changes by CMS on what gets paid for by Medicare and Medicaid. If a state’s scope of practice act did not give clear authority for a function, nurse practitioners won’t get paid for their work.

    SF 2247, a bill relating to terminology changes in Iowa Code, made references to mental retardation.  Mental retardation references in the code were changed to intellectual disability. “Intellectual disability” means a disability of children and adults who as a result of inadequately developed intelligence have a significant impairment in ability to learn or to adapt to the demands of society. Governor Branstad signed the bill on March 22, 2012.

    SF 2312 was the second bill passed out of the three dealing with mental health redesign. The important part of SF 2312 for ARNPs is the definition of mental health professional.

    It is the intent of the legislature that all future references in legislation to mental health professional will be cross referenced to this definition.  Nurse practitioners had to do some strong lobbying to assist in getting a definition that reflected the independence of our practice.  The definition of mental health professional is as follows:

    "Mental health professional” means an individual who has either (a or b) of the following qualifications:

    a. The individual meets all of the following requirements: (1) The individual holds at least a master’s degree in a mental health field, including but not limited to psychology, counseling and guidance, nursing, and social work, or is an advanced registered nurse practitioner, a physician assistant, or a physician and surgeon or an osteopathic physician and surgeon. (2) The individual holds a current Iowa license if practicing in a field covered by an Iowa licensure law. (3) The individual has at least two years of post-degree clinical experience, supervised by another mental health professional, in assessing mental health needs and problems and in providing appropriate mental health services.

    b. The individual holds a current Iowa license if practicing in a field covered by an Iowa licensure law and is a psychiatrist, an advanced registered nurse practitioner who holds a national certification in psychiatric mental health care registered by the board of nursing, a physician assistant practicing under the supervision of a psychiatrist, or an individual who holds a doctorate degree in psychology and is licensed by the Board of Psychology. SF 2312 was signed by Governor Branstad on April 12, 2012.

    SF 2315 was the centerpiece of mental health redesign. The most difficult part of this bill was the funding involved between the state and local governments. For ARNPs, the most difficult part was making sure that all the definitions reflected the independent practice of ARNPs. Here is the definition of mental health services in the bill.  Prior to an amendment ARNPs instigated, the section was called “psychiatric services.”

    "Mental health services” means services provided by a mental health professional operating within the scope of the professional’s practice which address mental, emotional, medical, or behavioral problems.

    In one section of the bill, we convinced legislators to change language which had psychiatrists delegating duties to ARNPs. The changed language read as follows: After the respondent’s admission, the observation, medical treatment, and hospital care of the respondent may be provided by a mental health professional, as defined in section 228.1, who is licensed as a physician, advanced registered nurse practitioner or physician assistant. SF 2315 contained useful language on how to treat patients with co-occurring conditions:

    “A mental health professional, as defined in section 228.1, who is employed by a treatment provider under the program, may provide treatment to a person with co-occurring substance-related and mental health disorder. Such treatment may also be provided by a person employed by such a treatment provider who is receiving the  supervision required to meet the definition of  mental health professional but has not completed the supervision component.”

    2013

    The Iowa Supreme Court delivered a resounding victory for nursing and nurse practitioners on May 31.  The issue was supervision of fluoroscopy, an issue which had been stewing since 2007.  The high court reversed the Polk County District Court and upheld the BON and IDPH administrative rules regarding the supervision by ARNPS of radiation techs conducting fluoroscopy. As an added benefit of the Iowa Supreme Court ruling, the decision makes clear that the Board of Nursing is in total control of the scope of practice for nurses.  Since the 1970’s, interpretation over part of the BON statute implied that the BON had to consult with other health and medical groups when dealing with scope of practice matters.  Some have implied that the other groups held some kind of veto power over the BON, if they disagreed with a proposal.

    The Iowa DOT promulgated an administrative rule completing the journey of allowing nurse practitioners to both report drivers who shouldn’t be on the road for health reasons and to have physical exams accepted by DOT to allow those drivers to return to driving. The rule went into effect on May 8th, 2013.

    HF 486 dropped language from the code which required nurse practitioners to confer with physicians before making referrals to orthotic, prosthetic, and pedorthic professionals. The law was signed on April 5th.

     SF 203 was important because we had to be watchful so that ARNPs, working in sub-acute facilities, could maintain their autonomy of practice, to the extent of their scope of practice. The original drafting of this bill would have allowed only psychiatrists to supervise the treatment care plans for those being treated in the facility.  We were able to convince the legislature to change the bill from psychiatrists to mental health professionals, which includes ARNPs.  SF 203 was signed into law on April 5th.

     SF 115 was a change in the intermediate drivers’ license law, a concept that ARNPs had supported for a number of years. The intermediate license has been expanded from six months to twelve months.  SF 115 also requires, for the first six months of the intermediate license, that the driver can have only one other underage and unrelated passenger, unless such provision is waived by the parents. This law, signed by the Governor on May 1, takes effect on January 1 of 2014.

    HF 604 created a new rural loan funding program for nurse practitioners to be administered by the College Student Aid Commission.  The legislature appropriated $400,000 for the program for the 2014 fiscal year beginning in July.  For nurse practitioners the program will work only at the University of Iowa for those students seeking a doctorate of nursing practices degree. For PAs, the eligible program is a master’s degree from Des Moines University.

    SF 452, which was passed into law, contained a section on death certificates. When an electronic system for filing death certificates is developed, each professional allowed to sign death certificates shall use the electronic system.  Advanced registered nurse practitioners are listed among those professionals. This is due to the passage into law of HF 393 in 2011, allowing nurse practitioners to sign death certificates of their patients. SF 452 also incorporated HF 9 and SF 393, requiring pulse oximetry screening for newborns.  Each newborn is be tested for congenital heart disease by means of pulse oximetry or other means as developed by administrative rule. The attending health care professional is responsible for seeing that the test is administered.  If the parent objects to the test, it will not be done, and the objection shall be noted in the newborn’s medical records.

    2014

    SF 2120 was a bill which amended chapter 147.74 of the code.  This code section outlines medical professionals and the acronyms which professionals may use. SF 2120 legalized the use of “ARNP.”  It was discovered that nurse practitioners were never included in this subsection of chapter 147.  Because the bill was written using the term “licensed” in conjunction with nurse practitioners, it is the Attorney General’s opinion that the Board of Nursing can institute a licensing program for nurse practitioners instead of the current “registration” program.  Therefore, this seemingly minor law, signed on March 26th, inadvertently became a much more meaningful law.

    2015

    SF 203 was a bill introduced by the Board of Nursing, having to do with persons and activities regulated by the Board of Nursing.  SF 203 was basically a bill updating language, such as adding a definition of nurse practitioner to the code for the first time in chapter 152.  SF 203 also changed all references of “registered with” to “licensed by” the BON for nurse practitioners throughout the code of Iowa where the language previously occurred.  All laws from other code sections, also contained in chapter 152, were changed to reflect the appropriate language for the licensing of nurse practitioners. SF 203 also changed the requirement when the BON wanted a licensee to have a medical examination by a physician to a “medical evaluation” by a health care provider. SF 203 was signed by Governor Branstad on April 24th.

  • 21 May 2015 6:43 PM | Lara Marsh (Administrator)

    In this issue:

    ·         Appropriations bills of interest.

    ·         The bill to legalize fireworks has moved.

    ·         Bills that have been signed by the Governor.

    Appropriations

    ·         SF 505(Formerly SSB 1288)Health and Human Services Appropriations Bill. This bill has gone into conference committee. For a complete analysis of the impact to IDPH please refer to the previously published legislative update sent on May 18, 2015.

    ·         SF 494 (Formerly SSB 1279) Agricultural and Natural Resources Appropriations Bill. IDPH is monitoring the section of this bill that impacts funding to the Grants to Counties Program. The funding comes from the Groundwater Protection Fund and a portion in the amount of $1.2 million will be reallocated to Iowa State University as one-time funding for a pilot program that is similar in nature to the issue of groundwater protection. IDPH is aware of a surplus of funding in the Fund, however, the department is cautioning legislators against “scooping” too much of the funding due to administrative rules that have just gone into effect that will likely increase spending in the Grants to Counties Program. This bill passed the Senate Chamber on April 27 by a vote of 26-23. UPDATE: The bill passed the House Chamber on May 5 by a vote of 57-42. The Senate refused to concur with the House amendment and the bill is now in conference committee.  Conference committee members include Senators Mary Jo Wilhelm, Dick Dearden, Kevin Kinney, Ken Rozenboom, and Jason Schultz. House members of the committee include Representatives Jack Drake, Norlin Mommsen, Pat Grassley, Scott Ourth, and Nancy Dunkel.

    ·         SF 510 (Formerly SSB 1289) Standings Appropriations Bill. This bill passed the Senate Chamber on May 14 by a vote of 26-21. It has been heavily amended by the House Chamber and was passed on May 21 by a vote of 54-42. It is likely that this bill will be placed into a Conference Committee like the other appropriations bills have been.

    IDPH is monitoring the following proposals included in the Senate’s version of the bill:

    o    Establishment of a state employee incentive program (SERIP) for eligible employees of the Executive Branch.

    o    Supplemental appropriations from the FY 2015 ending balance of:

    §  $2.8 million to IDPH for providing a grant to a substance abuse treatment provider association.

    §  $1.5 million to IDPH for a collaborative effort to assist heart attack patients.

    o    A requirement for the Department of Education to establish a School Climate and Bullying Work Group. A report is due to specified members of the General Assembly by December 15, 2016.

    o    A requirement for IDPH to adopt rules that require facilities that provide mammography services to include information on breast density in mammogram reports sent to patients.

    o    An amendment to current statutory language related to drug overdose prevention and the prescription and administration of opioid antagonists, and provides immunity from certain criminal offenses for persons that seek medical assistance for a person experiencing an overdose.

    o    An amendment to current statutory language that lengthens the time the Pharmacy Board is allowed to temporarily designate substances as controlled substances to two years before the General Assembly must act to codify the change.

    o    Enactment of the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact to create an expedited licensing reciprocity procedure for physicians licensed in member states.

    o    A requirement for IDPH to regulate residential swimming pools used for private swimming lessons as a residential pool used for commercial purposes if the residential pool is used for private swimming lessons for up to 270 hours per month or the number of hours prescribed by local ordinance, whichever is greater.

    IDPH is monitoring the following proposals included in the House’s version of the bill:

    o    Appropriations from the Technology Reinvestment Fund (TRF) for FY 2016:

    §  $400,000 for IDPH to fund a professional review of our data collection systems. This is one of the budget priorities for IDPH for FY 2016.

    • §  $36,000 for implementation of HF 203 that relates to the licensure of polysomnographic technicians.

    ·         HF 650 (Formerly HSB 246) Infrastructure Appropriations Bill (aka RIIF Bill). This bill passed the House Chamber on April 29 by a vote of 97-1. It passed the Senate Chamber on May 11 by a vote of 26-22. The House refused to concur with the Senate’s amendment and the bill is now in conference committee. Members of the conference committee include Senators Matt McCoy, Tod Bowman, Jake Chapman, Tim Kapucian, and Janet Petersen. Members from the House include Representatives Dan Huseman, Dave Maxwell, Quentin Stanerson, Dennis Cohoon, and Dave Dawson.

    IDPH is monitoring the following appropriations included in the Senate’s version of this bill for FY 2016 from the Technology Reinvestment Fund (TRF):

    • o    $500,000 to study the 98 database systems in IDPH for long and short term planning of replacement and consolidation strategies. This is a department budget priority for FY 2016.
    • o    $500,000 for the Bureaus of Family Health (BRF) and the Bureau of Oral and Health Delivery Services’ data integration project. This is a department budget priority for FY 2016. IDPH also requested $500,000 for FY 2017 for this project which was also recommended by the Governor. However it was not provided in the Senate’s TRF budget. This is in line with the philosophical difference between the Governor and the Senate Chamber of the necessity of a biennial budget.
    • o    $36,000 for implementation of HF 203 that relates to the licensure of polysomnographic technicians.
    • o    $300,000 to support stillbirth surveillance activities under the Iowa Registry for Congenital and Inherited Disorders.

    Other bills of interest

    ·         HF 614 (Formerly HSB 161) Legalization of Fireworks. NEW: This bill was voted out of the House Ways and Means Committee on March 30. It passed the House Chamber on May 20 by a vote of 53-43.

     

    Signed by the Governor

    HF 449 (Formerly HF 263) DHS Bed Tracking System. This bill passed out of the House Chamber on March 12 by a vote of 96-0. It passed out of the Senate Chamber on April 8 by a vote of 48-0 with an amendment. The Senate concurred with the House amendment on April 15 by a vote of 92-0. UPDATE: The bill was signed into law by Governor Branstad on April 24.

     HF 585 (Formerly HF 233) Secretary of State Address Confidentiality Program. UPDATE: This bill passed the House Chamber on March 26 by a vote of 100-0. It passed the Senate Chamber on April 15 by a vote of 45-0. The House concurred with the Senate amendment on April 24 and the Governor signed the bill into law on May 7.

    HF 630(Formerly HSB 177)Governor’s Federal Block Grant Bill. This bill passed the House Chamber on April 15 by a vote of 92-0. UPDATE: It passed the Senate Chamber on April 29 by a vote of 50-0. The bill was signed into law by Governor Branstad on May 15.

    Other Information

    • Agency Reports. To review any report filed with the General Assembly by executive branch agencies, including IDPH, please click here.
    • The Iowa General Assembly website is a great source of legislative information. The address is www.legis.iowa.gov. Take a few minutes to check out the wealth of resources available.
  • 19 May 2015 6:41 PM | Lara Marsh (Administrator)

    In this issue:

    ·         Comparison of the Governor’s Recommendations vs. the Senate and House Chambers’ Budget Proposals for IDPH

    ·         Status of the IDPH Budget Priorities

    Appropriations

    ·         SF 505 (Formerly SSB 1288) Health and Human Resources Appropriations Bill. The Department of Public Health’s General Fund appropriations are provided for in this bill. Not surprisingly, the House and Senate Chambers have different proposals. The bill was started in the Senate Chamber and was debated on the floor on May 6. It passed out of the chamber by a vote of 26-22. It traveled over to the House where it was significantly changed by a strike-after amendment. This means that the House amendment completely removed all of the Senate’s language and replaced it with their own proposals. The House Chamber debated their version of the bill on the floor on May 13. It passed the chamber by a vote of 56-40. The Senate refused the House amendment on the following day and by May 14, a Conference Committee had been established. Senate members of the Conference Committee include, Senators Amanda Ragan, Joe Bolkcom, Bob Dvorsky, David Johnson, and Mark Segebart. House members include Representatives Dave Heaton, Linda Miller, Joel Fry, Lisa Heddens, and John Forbes.

    Conference committees were once a scarcity however as the Statehouse has become more and more divided on budgeting principles they have become a more familiar part of the appropriations process. The legislators appointed to the committees work on behalf of their chambers and their caucuses to find the middle ground necessary to come to an agreement. Legislative leadership from both chambers will first work out joint targets for each committee to abide by. In other words, the compromises that comprise their Conference Committee Reports must abide by these budgetary parameters. There are other rules that govern these committees, too. For example, the committees can only consider the proposals that have already been introduced in the bill. This means that any ideas that were not included in the Senate version of SF 505 or the House amendment to SF 505 cannot be considered moving forward. This is important because it narrows the topics for discussion. Once the committees come to a compromise they will release their Conference Committee Report to the public. The public is not privy to the negotiations that take place before the report is released. The final step is to vote on the committee’s report. There is an up or down vote in each chamber and amendments are not allowed to be offered.

    The following table illustrates the differences between the Governor’s Recommendations and the House and Senate’s proposals for IDPH Programs (unless otherwise stated as pass-through funding to other entities): 

    Program

    Governor’s Rec.

    Senate Budget

    House Budget

     

    1st Five Program

     

    Status quo funding of $1,627,887.

     

    Increase of $3,285,000 for a total of $4,912,887. The increase is directed for statewide expansion of the program from 49 counties to all 99.

     

    Status quo funding of $1,627,887.

     

    Board of Respiratory Care and Polysomnography (New legislative directive for FY 2016. HF 203 was signed into law on April 24, 2015.)

     

    This was a 2016 legislative directive. The Governor did not make a budget recommendation for this bill.

     

    Currently, the IDPH- requested $36,000 is provided for in the Senate’s RIIF bill, HF 650, from the Technology Reinvestment Fund (TRF). The House has not appropriated any funding from the TRF to date.

     

    Added a directive in SF 505, that the Board repay any General Fund allocation received. No General Funds have been appropriated for this purpose to date.

     

    Center for Congenital and Inherited Disorders

     

     

    Status quo funding of $526,695.

     

    Increase of $150,169 for a total of $676,864. The increase is directed to stillbirth surveillance activities.

     

    Status quo funding of $526,695.

     

    Direct Care Workers –

    Mouth Care Matters Training Program (New program for FY 2016. Pass-through to the Iowa Caregivers Association)

     

    No recommendation for this program.

     

    Increase of $30,000 to the current allocation to the Iowa Caregivers Association for educational conferences, training, or outreach activities for a total of $105,000.

     

    Funding was removed for this program in the House proposal.

     

    Direct Care Workers Advisory Council

     

    Status quo funding of $213,400.

     

    Status quo funding of $213,400.

     

    Elimination of the funding.

     

    Direct Care Workers Association

    (Pass-through funding to the Iowa Caregivers Association)

     

    Status quo funding of $216,375.

     

    Status quo funding of $216,375.

     

    Elimination of the funding.

     

    Direct Care Worker Scholarships

    (Pass-through funding to the Iowa Caregivers Association)

     

     

    Status quo funding of $75,000.

     

    Status quo funding of $75,000.

     

    Elimination of the funding.

     

    Director’s Wellness Initiative

     

     

    Status quo funding of $25,000.

     

    Status quo funding of $25,000.

     

    Elimination of the funding.

     

    Family Planning Waiver

     

    Continuation of the current Family Planning Waiver.

     

    Continuation of the current Family Planning Waiver.

     

    Elimination of the federally-supported Family Planning Waiver. Authorization of a state funded program with new guidelines.

     

    Fulfilling Iowa’s Need for Dentists (FIND) Dental Education Loan Repayment Program

    (Pass-through funding to Delta Dental of Iowa)

     

    Status quo funding of $50,000.

     

    Increase of $50,000 for a total of $100,000.

     

    Status quo funding of $50,000.

     

    hawk-I Outreach

    (DHS subcontracts with IDPH for this work)

     

    Recommendation of $42,800 in state funds. Federal support of the program fluctuates based on the annual Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP). The total funding for the program is status quo compared to FY 2015.

     

    Allocation of $42,800 in state funds. Federal support of the program fluctuates based on the annual Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP). The total funding for the program is status quo compared to FY 2015.

     

    Elimination of the requested state funding of $42,800 which will result in the loss of the federal funding and therefore the entire contract.

     

    Iowa Donor Registry

    (Pass-through to the Iowa Donor Network)

     

    Status quo funding of $250,000.

     

     

    Status quo funding of $250,000.

     

     

    Reduction of $100,000 for a total of $150,000.

     

    Office of Health Care Transformation. The House refers to it as the “Medical Home Residency Advisory Council”

     

     

    Status quo funding of $215,263.

     

    Status quo funding of $215,263.

     

    Elimination of the funding.

     

    Medical Residency Program

     

    Increase of $1.0 million for a total of $3.0 million.

     

    Status quo funding of $2.0 million.

     

    Status quo funding of $2.0 million.

     

    Prevent Blindness Iowa (Pass-through)

     

    Status quo funding of $100,000.

     

    Status quo funding of $100,000.

     

    Elimination of the funding in the amount of $100,000.

     

    Iowa Read Out and Read Program (Pass-through)

     

    Status quo funding of $50,000.

     

    Elimination of the funding.

     

    Elimination of the funding.

     

    Safety Net Provider Network administered by the Iowa Primary Care Association (IPCA) (Pass-through):

     

    The Governor provided for language in his budget bill, SSB 1280,that consolidated the number of allocation paragraphs for this program in an effort to increase the flexibility of the funding stream. He recommended status quo funding for a total of $2,737,184.

     

     

    The Senate also consolidated the number of allocation paragraphs for this program in an effort to increase the flexibility of the funding stream. The language they used is slightly different than the Governor’s. The Senate also recommended status quo funding for a total of $2,737,184.

     

     

    The House used the language from the FY 2015 HHS appropriations bill and eliminated funding for the programs named in the leftmost column of this table.

    • ·          Collaborative   Administration Allocation

    Elimination of the funding: $145,785.

    • ·          FQHC Medical Homes

    Elimination of the funding: $75,000.

    • ·          Local Boards of Health for Medical Homes Pilots

    Elimination of the funding: $77,153.

    • ·          Child and Maternal Health Pilot Projects

    Elimination of the funding: $141,544.

    • ·          Rural Health Clinics

    Elimination of the funding: $141,544.

    • ·          Iowa Primary Care Association Collaborative Safety Net Integrated Network

    Elimination of the funding: $1,158,150.

     

    Tobacco Use Prevention and Control

     

    Status quo funding of $5,248,361.

     

    Status quo funding of $5,248,361.

     

    General reduction of $675,000.

     

    IDPH Budget Priorities

    • General Fund (SF 505):
      • Reallocation request of $200,000 from the Cervical Cancer Screening Program to the Bureau of EMS and Trauma Systems.
        • This has appeared in each Chamber’s HHS budget proposal.
      • Increase of $1.0 million for the Medical Residency Program.
        • This has not appeared in either Chamber’s HHS budget proposal.
    • Technology Reinvestment Fund (TRF):
      • $500,000 to study the 98 database systems in IDPH for long and short term planning of replacement and consolidation strategies.
      • $500,000 in FY 2016 and FY 2017 for the Bureaus of Family Health and OHDS’ data integration project.
        • HF 650, as introduced by the House, did not make any appropriations from the TRF. The Senate amended the bill and included the IDPH priorities as part of their allocations from the TRF with the exception of the $500,000 for FY 2017 for the BRF and OHDS data integration project. This is in line with the philosophical difference between the Governor and the Senate Chamber of the necessity of a biennial budget.

    Other Information

    • The Iowa General Assembly website is a great source of legislative information. The address is www.legis.iowa.gov. Take a few minutes to check out the wealth of resources available.
  • 28 Apr 2015 11:45 PM | Lara Marsh (Administrator)

    In this issue:

    ·         The IDPH Legislative Package is wrapped up for the year.

    ·         Select bills that continue to move through the legislative process.

    ·         Bills that have been signed by the Governor.

    ·         Bills that have been sent to the Governor.

    IDPH Legislative Package

    IDPH has three bills for the 2015 session:

    ·         Omnibus Bill: SF 274 SF 274 passed out of the Senate Chamber on March 17 by a vote of 50-0. It passed the House Chamber on April 8 by a vote of 97-0. It was signed into law by Governor Branstad on April 24.

    ·         Iowa Health Information Network (IHIN) Transition. HF 381 HF 381 passed out of the House Chamber on March 10 by a vote of 98-1. It passed the Senate Chamber on April 7 by a vote of 46-4. It will now be sent to the Governor for his signature. It was signed into law by Governor Branstad on April 24.

    ·         Local Public Health Flexibility Bill: SF 275 This bill passed the House Human Resources Committee on March 31 with an attached amendment, H-1175. However, it was not placed on the House Unfinished Business Calendar by April 9th. This means that it is no longer eligible for consideration this session.

    Appropriations

    ·         HF 630 (Formerly HSB 177) Governor’s Federal Block Grant Bill. A subcommittee of Representatives Ken Rizer, Walt Rogers, and Kirsten Running-Marquardt met on March 12 and again on March 30. UPDATE: This bill passed the House Chamber on April 15 by a vote of 92-0. It passed out of the Senate Appropriations Committee on April 23 and may now be taken up by the full Senate Chamber.

    ·         SF 494 (Formerly SSB 1279) Agricultural and Natural Resources Appropriations Bill. NEW: IDPH is monitoring Section 18 (page 12, line 17) of this bill that impacts funding to the Grants to Counties Program. The funding comes from the Groundwater Protection Fund and a portion in the amount of $1.2 million will be reallocated to Iowa State University as one-time funding for a pilot program that is similar in nature to the issue of groundwater protection. IDPH is aware of a surplus of funding in the Fund, however, the department is cautioning legislators against over “scooping” the funding due to administrative rules that have just gone into effect that will likely increase spending in the Grants to Counties Program. This bill passed the Senate on April 27 by a vote of 36-23.

    Medical Marijuana

    ·         SF 484 (Formerly SSB 1243) Medical Cannabis Act. This bill passed out of the Senate Ways and Means Committee on March 30. UPDATE: It passed out of the full Senate Chamber on April 15 by a vote of 26-19. It has been referred to the House Public Safety Committee.

    Tobacco

    ·         SSB 1195 Tobacco Retailer Permit Fee Increases and Reporting Requirements. This bill was referred to the Senate Ways and Means Committee. A subcommittee of Senators Petersen, Behn, and Quirmbach met on February 25 to discuss the legislation. It appeared that more work was needed on the bill but that it was the intent to recommend its passage to the full committee.

    Other Bills of Interest

    • HF 534 (Formerly HSB 188). Mental Health Professional Shortage Area Program. This bill passed out of the House Chamber by a vote of 99-0, with amendments, on March 26. It passed out of the Senate Human Resources Committee on April 1 with an amendment. It may now be taken up by the full Senate Chamber.
    • SSB 1274 Birth Certificate Fees/Stillbirth Surveillance. This bill was introduced on April 6 and referred the Senate Ways and Means Committee. A subcommittee of Senators Janet Petersen, Joe Bolkcom, and Roby Smith met on April 9 and passed the bill out. The bill may now be taken up by the full Ways and Means Committee.

    Signed by the Governor

    • SF 200  Iowa Dental Board Executive Director. This bill passed the Senate Chamber on February 24 by a vote of 49-0. It passed the House Chamber on April 7 by a vote of 96-0. This bill was signed into law by Governor Branstad on April 17.
    • SF 276 Relinquishment of Licenses by the Board of Medicine. This bill passed the Senate on March 9 by a vote of 49-0. It passed the House Chamber on April 7 by a vote of 97-0. This bill was signed into law by Governor Branstad on April 17.
    • HF 203 Licensure of Polysomnographic Technicians (aka Sleep Techs). UPDATE: This bill passed the House Chamber on March 24 by a vote of 100-0. It passed the Senate Chamber on April 7 by a vote of 37-13 with an amendment. The House concurred with the Senate amendment on April 15 by a vote of 91-1. This bill was signed into law by Governor Branstad on April 24.
    • SF 203 Board of Nursing Omnibus Bill. This bill passed the Senate Chamber on March 10 by a vote of 50-0. It passed the House Chamber on April 7 by a vote of 97-0. It bounced back to the Senate for concurrence with a House amendment on April 8. This bill was signed into law by Governor Branstad on April 24.
    • SF 335 Release of Autopsy Information to Organ Procurement Organizations. This bill passed the Senate Chamber on March 10 by a vote of 50-0. It passed the House by a vote of 98-0 on April 8 with an amendment. The Senate concurred with the House amendment on April 13 by a vote of 47-0. It was signed into law by Governor Branstad on April 24.
    • SF 434 (Formerly SSB 1235) Barbering Continuing Education Requirements. This bill passed the Senate Chamber by of a vote of 49-0 on March 18. UPDATE: It passed out of the House Chamber on April 8 by a vote of 60-37. It was signed into law by Governor Branstad on April 24.

    Sent to the Governor

    The following bills will be sent to the Governor for his consideration:

    • HF 449 (Formerly HF 263) DHS Bed Tracking System. This bill passed out of the House Chamber on March 12 by a vote of 96-0. It passed out of the Senate Chamber on April 8 by a vote of 48-0 with an amendment. UPDATE: The Senate concurred with the House amendment on April 15 by a vote of 92-0.

    Other Information

    • Agency Reports. To review any report filed with the General Assembly by executive branch agencies, including IDPH, please click here.
    • The Iowa General Assembly website is a great source of legislative information. The address is www.legis.iowa.gov. Take a few minutes to check out the wealth of resources available.

    Deborah H. Thompson, MPA
    Policy Advisor & Healthiest State Initiative Coordinator  | Iowa Department of Public Health
    321 E. 12th St | Des Moines, IA 50319 | Office: 515-281-8960 Mobile: 515-240-0530| deborah.thompson@idph.iowa.gov

    Promoting and Protecting the Health of Iowans

  • 13 Apr 2015 3:54 PM | Lara Marsh (Administrator)

    In this issue:

    • Select bills that continue to move through the legislative process.
    • A list of notable bills that did not advance past session deadlines.
    • Bills that have been signed by the Governor.
    • Bills that have been sent to the Governor.

    Session Deadlines

    Two procedural deadlines have come and gone since in the last couple of weeks. The second funnel deadline occurred on April 3. Bills that had not passed at least one chamber and two committees (one in each chamber) are no longer considered live bills. The second deadline is a lesser known deadline. After April 10, the House and Senate Chambers only consider bills that have been placed on their respective Unfinished Business Calendars, Ways and Means Bills, Appropriations Bills, Resolutions, and bills that were introduced by leadership. It’s important to remember that there is no such thing as a dead bill. Anything could come back via amendments to other bills that are still alive or during the appropriations process. However, it is far greater of an uphill battle to resurrect something that has technically died by not advancing past these deadlines.

    IDPH Legislative Package

    IDPH has three bills for the 2015 session:

    • Omnibus Bill: SF 274 UPDATE: SF 274 passed out of the Senate Chamber on March 17 by a vote of 50-0. It passed the House Chamber on April 8 by a vote of 97-0. It will now be sent to the Governor for his signature.
    • Iowa Health Information Network (IHIN) Transition. HF 381 HF 381 passed out of the House Chamber on March 10 by a vote of 98-1. UPDATE: It passed the Senate Chamber on April 7 by a vote of 46-4. It will now be sent to the Governor for his signature.
    • Local Public Health Flexibility Bill: SF 275 UPDATE: This bill passed the House Human Resources Committee on March 31 with an attached amendment, H-1175. However, it was not placed on the House Unfinished Business Calendar by April 9th. This means that it is no longer eligible for consideration this session.

    Appropriations

    ·         HF 630 (Formerly HSB 177) Governor’s Federal Block Grant Bill. A subcommittee of Representatives Ken Rizer, Walt Rogers, and Kirsten Running-Marquardt met on March 12 and again on March 30. UPDATE: A public hearing is required for the bill and was held on April 6. The bill passed out of the House Appropriations Committee on April 7. It may now be taken up by the full House Chamber.

    Behavioral Health

    • ·         HF 449 (Formerly HF 263) DHS Bed Tracking System. This bill passed out of the House Chamber on March 12 by a vote of 96-0. UPDATE: It passed out of the Senate Chamber on April 8 by a vote of 48-0. It was amended on the floor and will need to be sent back to the House for their concurrence with the Senate’s changes.

    Medical Marijuana

    ·         SF 484 (Formerly SSB 1243) Medical Cannabis Act. UPDATE: This bill passed out of the Senate Ways and Means Committee on March 30. It has been placed on the Senate Unfinished Business Calendar. It may now be considered by the full Senate Chamber.

    Professional Licensure

    • ·         SF 337/HF 203 (Formerly SSB 1130/HSB 75) Licensure of Polysomnographic Technicians (aka Sleep Techs). SSB 1130 passed the full Senate State Government Committee on February 25 with an amendment. The new bill number is SF 337. UPDATE: HF 203 passed as amended (H-1133) the House Chamber by a vote of 100-0 on March 24. A conforming amendment was been adopted in the Senate (S-3078) as well as one additional amendment. The bill passed the Senate Chamber by a vote of 37-13. It will be sent back to the House for their concurrence with the Senate’s additional amendment (S-3081).

    Tobacco

    ·         SSB 1195 Tobacco Retailer Permit Fee Increases and Reporting Requirements. UPDATE: This bill was referred to the Senate Ways and Means Committee which makes it funnel-proof. A subcommittee of Senators Petersen, Behn, and Quirmbach met on February 25 to discuss the legislation. It appeared that more work was needed on the bill but that it was the intent to recommend its passage to the full committee.

     

    Other Bills of Interest

    • HF 534 (Formerly HSB 188). Mental Health Professional Shortage Area Program. UPDATE: This bill passed out of the House Chamber by a vote of 99-0, with amendments, on March 26. It passed out of the Senate Human Resources Committee on April 1 with an amendment. It may now be taken up by the full Senate Chamber.
    • SSB 1274 Birth Certificate Fees/Stillbirth Surveillance. NEW BILL: This bill was introduced on April 6 and referred the Senate Ways and Means Committee. A subcommittee of Senators Janet Petersen, Joe Bolkcom, and Roby Smith met on April 9 and passed the bill out. The bill may now be taken up by the full Ways and Means Committee.

    Notable Bills that have Died To Date

    • SF 205 (Formerly SSB 1094) Mammography Notification Requirements. UPDATE: This bill passed the Senate Chamber on February 24 by a vote of 49-0. It was referred to the House Human Resources Committee but did not advance this step in time to meet the second funnel deadline.
    • SF 219 (Formerly SSB 1121) Marijuana Penalties. UPDATE: This bill passed the Senate Chamber by a vote of 36-13 on February 24. It was referred to the House Public Safety Committee but did not advance this step in time to meet the second funnel deadline.
    • SF 372 (Formerly SSB 1172) Durable Medical Equipment Licensure. This bill passed out of the full Senate State Government Committee on March 2 with an amendment. UPDATE: However it was never taken up by the full Senate Chamber and has been referred back to the State Government Committee for consideration next session.
    • SF 273 (Formerly SSB 1019) Interstate Medical Licensure Compact. UPDATE: This bill was introduced by the Iowa Board of Medicine. It passed the Senate Chamber by a vote of 42-7 and was referred to the House Human Resources Committee. It did not advance this step in time to meet the second funnel deadline.
    • SF 399 (Formerly SSB 1122) Radon in Residential New Construction. The bill passed out of the Senate State Government Committee on March 4 with an amendment. However, it was referred back to that committee for consideration next session.
    • SF 410 (Formerly SSB 1209). Drug Overdose Prevention. SF 410 passed out of the Senate Chamber, with an amendment (S-3055), by a vote of 44-2. UPDATE: It passed out of the House Public Safety Committee on April 1 with an attached amendment, H-1169. However, it was referred back to that committee for consideration next session.
    • SF 441 (Formerly SSB 1167) Health Workforce Center. This bill passed out of the Senate Chamber, with an amendment, on March 18 by a vote of 50-0. It was referred to the House Human Resources Committee. UPDATE: However, it did not advance this step in time to meet the second funnel deadline.
    • SF 444 (Formerly SSB 1257) Comprehensive Study of the EMS System. UPDATE: This bill passed the Senate State Government Committee on March 5. However, it was not taken up by the full Senate Chamber and has been referred back to the State Government Committee for consideration next session.
    • SF 454(Formerly SSB 1208) Study of the Health and Well-Being of Children in Iowa. This bill passed the Senate Chamber by a vote of 47-0 on March 12. It was referred to the House Human Resources Committee. UPDATE: It did not advance this step in time to meet the second funnel deadline.
    • SF 464 (Formerly SF 302) Reauthorization of the Disabilities Prevention Council. This bill passed out of the Senate Chamber by a vote of 50-0 on March 17. UPDATE: It passed out of the House Human Resources Committee on March 31 with amendment H-1174 attached. However, it was not placed on the House Unfinished Business Calendar by April 9th. This means that it is no longer eligible for consideration this session.
    • SF 465 (Formerly SSB 1182) Designation of a Family Caregiver/Inpatient Hospital Stay. This bill passed out of the Senate Human Resources Committee on March 10. However, it was referred back to that committee for consideration next session.
    • HF 420 (Formerly HSB 81) Tanning Facility Ban for Minors. UPDATE: This bill passed the House Human Resources Committee on February 17. However, it was not taken up by the full House Chamber and has been referred back to the Human Resources Committee for consideration next session.
    • HF 510 (Formerly HF 251) Behavioral Health Transports. This bill passed out of the House Chamber by a vote of 95-1 on March 17. UPDATE: It passed out of the Senate Human Resources Committee on March 31 with an amendment. However, it was not placed on the House Unfinished Business Calendar by April 9th. This means that it is no longer eligible for consideration this session.
    • HF 580 (Formerly HSB 144) Regulation of Water treatment Systems. UPDATE: This bill passed the House Chamber by a vote of 85-13 on March 30. It was referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee but did not advance this step in time to meet the second funnel deadline.
    • HF 584 (Formerly HSB 178) Short-term Testing for Radon in Public Schools. UPDATE: This bill passed the House Local Government Committee on March 4 and was then referred to the House Education Committee. The bill did not advance this step in time to meet the second funnel deadline.  
    • HF 600 (Formerly HF 218) Tele-health Regulations. This bill passed the House Human Resources Committee on February 19 and was then referred to the House Commerce Committee on March 17. UPDATE: It passed out of the House Commerce Committee on March 25 but was referred back to the House Human Resources Committee for consideration next session.

     

    Signed by the Governor

    • SF 440 (Formerly SSB 1200) Interstate Contracts/Substance Abuse and Mental Health Care and Treatment. SF 440 was signed into law by Governor Branstad on March 31. It will become effective on July 1, 2015.
    • HF 202 (Formerly HSB 45) Licensure of Retired Dentists and Dental Hygienists. HF 202 was signed into law by Governor Branstad on March 31. It will become effective on July 1, 2015.
    • HF 371 (Formerly HSB 119) Allowable Disclosure of Radon Testing Results. HF 371 was signed into law by Governor Branstad on March 31. It will become effective on July 1, 2015.
    • HF 570 (Formerly HSB 35) Community Use of Municipality-Controlled Property. HF 570 was signed into law by Governor Branstad on March 31. It will become effective on July 1, 2015.

     

    Sent to the Governor

    The following bills will be sent to the Governor for his consideration:

    • SF 200 (Formerly SSB 1016) Iowa Dental Board Executive Director. This bill passed the Senate Chamber on February 24 by a vote of 49-0. It passed the House Chamber on April 7 by a vote of 96-0.
    • SF 203 (Formerly SSB 1097) Board of Nursing Omnibus Bill. This bill passed the Senate Chamber on March 10 by a vote of 50-0. It passed the House Chamber on April 7 by a vote of 97-0. It bounced back to the Senate for concurrence with a House amendment on April 8.
    • SF 276 (Formerly 1015) Relinquishment of  Licenses by the Board of Medicine. This bill passed the Senate on March 9 by a vote of 49-0. It passed the House Chamber on April 7 by a vote of 97-0.
    • SF 434(Formerly SSB 1235) Barbering Continuing Education Requirements. This bill passed the Senate Chamber by of a vote of 49-0 on March 18. UPDATE: It passed out of the House Chamber on April 8 by a vote of 60-37.


    Other Information

  • 27 Mar 2015 2:46 PM | Lara Marsh (Administrator)

    IANP/INPS registered on over 30 bills this session. There are 10 bills left which are still alive from that list. The next deadline is on April 2nd. Some bills below have already qualified for the second deadline – which is passing either the House or Senate and a committee on the other side.

    Most of these bills will likely stay alive until the end of the session, and most should pass and become new laws. The most important of these are the Board of Nursing bill, SF 203; managed care legislative oversight, SF 452; the medical candor bill, which NPs are a part of, SF 426; telehealth, HF 600; and maintaining the disabilities council, SF 464.

    Click here to see the status of the bills we’re most interested in.
    Joe Kelly

  • 25 Mar 2015 10:02 AM | Lara Marsh (Administrator)

    In this issue:

    ·        Select bills that have advanced.

     

    IDPH Legislative Package

    IDPH has three bills for the 2015 session:

    ·        Omnibus Bill: HF 193/SF 274.SF 274 passed out of the Senate Chamber on March 17 by a vote of 50-0. HF 193, the companion bill, has passed out of the House Human Resources Committee. Therefore, SF 274 may now be taken up by the full House Chamber and that HF 193 will likely be withdrawn.

     

    ·        Local Public Health Flexibility Bill: SF 275. The companion bill, HSB 84, did not advance past the first funnel deadline. However, SF 275 passed the Senate on March 9 by a vote of 49-0 and is now moving in the House. A subcommittee of Representatives Rob Taylor, Lisa Heddens, and Ken Rizer met on March 19 to discuss amendment language. According to the discussion, it is likely that Division I that relates to clean-up of the Iowa Public Health Modernization Act in Iowa Code Chapter 135A will be removed from the bill leaving the second division that relates to Iowa Code Chapter 137, Local Boards of Health. Additional language that clarifies requirements under Iowa Code Chapter 135I, Swimming Pools and Spas will also be added to the amendment.

    ·        Iowa Health Information Network (IHIN) Transition. HF 381/SF 229. HF 381 passed out of the House Chamber on March 10 by a vote of 98-1. SF 229, the companion bill, has passed out of the Senate Human Resources Committee. Therefore, HF 381 may now be taken up by the full Senate Chamber and that SF 229 will likely be withdrawn. 

    Appropriations

    ·        HSB 177/SSB 1262 Governor’s Federal Block Grant Bill. A subcommittee of Representatives Ken Rizer, Walt Rogers, and Kirsten Running-Marquardt met on March 12. The Representatives have more questions regarding the administrative costs of administering the grants and have indicated that they will meet once more.

    Behavioral Health/Substance Abuse Prevention

    • SF 410 (Formerly SSB 1209). Drug Overdose Prevention. SF 410 passed out of the Senate Chamber, with an amendment, by a vote of 44-2. It has yet to be assigned to a House committee as of this writing.

    • SF 440 (Formerly SSB 1200) Interstate Contracts/Substance Abuse and Mental Health Care and Treatment. SF 440 passed out of the Senate Chamber by a vote of 47-0 on March 12. It passed out of the House Chamber by a vote of 96-0 on March 17. It will now be sent to the Governor for his consideration.  
    • HF 449 (Formerly HF 263) DHS Bed Tracking System. This bill passed out of the House Chamber on March 12 by a vote of 96-0. It has been referred to the Senate Human Resources Committee. A subcommittee of Senators Amanda Ragan, David Johnson, and Mary Jo Wilhelm have scheduled a meeting for Tuesday, March 24 at 1:00 in the Senate Lobbyist Lounge.

    Councils/Task Forces/Studies

    • SF 441 (Formerly SSB 1167) Health Workforce Center. This bill passed out of the Senate Chamber, with an amendment, on March 18 by a vote of 50-0. It has been referred to the House Human Resources Committee. The bill now charges IDPH with evaluating workforce programming under its purview.

    • SF 302 Reauthorization of the Disabilities Prevention Council. This bill passed out of the Senate Chamber by a vote of 50-0 on March 17. It has been referred to the House Human Resources Committee. A subcommittee of Representatives Dave Heaton, Lisa Heddens, and Ken Rizer met on March 23 and passed the legislation out. It may now be taken up by the full House Human Resource Committee.

    • SF 454 (Formerly SSB 1208) Study of the Health and Well-Being of Children in Iowa. This bill passed the Senate Chamber by a vote of 47-0 on March 12. It has been referred to the House Human Resources Committee. A subcommittee of Representatives Joel Fry, Rob Bacon, and Beth Wessel-Kroeschell has been appointed.

    EMS

    • HF 510 (Formerly HF 251) Behavioral Health Transports. This bill passed out of the House Chamber by a vote of 95-1 on March 17. It has been referred to the Senate Human Resources Committee. A subcommittee of Senators Amanda Ragan, David Johnson, and Liz Mathis have scheduled a meeting for Tuesday, March 24 at 12:30 in the Senate Lobbyist Lounge.

    Medical Marijuana

    ·        SSB 1243 Medical Cannabis Act. A subcommittee of Senators Joe Bolkcom, Bill Dotzler, and Julian Garrett met on March 11 and advanced the bill. It may now be considered by the full Senate Ways and Means Committee.

    Professional Licensure

    • SF 372 (Formerly SSB 1172) Durable Medical Equipment Licensure. This bill passed out of the full Senate State Government Committee on March 2 with an amendment.

     

    • SF 337/HF 203 (Formerly SSB 1130/HSB 75) Licensure of Polysomnographic Technicians (aka Sleep Techs). SSB 1130 passed the full Senate State Government Committee on February 25 with an amendment. HSB 75 passed out of the House State Government Committee on February 4 with an amendment.

    • SF 434 (Formerly SSB 1235)Barbering Continuing Education Requirements. This bill passed the Senate Chamber by of a vote of 49-0 on March 18. It has been referred to the House State Government Committee.

    • HF 600 (Formerly HF 218) Telehealth Regulations. This bill passed the House Human Resources Committee on February 19 and was then referred to the House Commerce Committee on March 17. A subcommittee of Representatives John Landon, John Forbes, and Ken Rizer has been appointed.

    Radon

    • SF 413/HF 371 (Formerly SSB 1155/HSB 119) Allowable Disclosure of Radon Testing Results. HF 371 passed out of the House Chamber by a vote of 96-0 on March 17. SF 413 is on the Senate Debate Calendar.

     

    • SF 399 (Formerly SSB 1122) Radon in Residential New Construction. A subcommittee of Senators Matt McCoy, Janet Petersen, and Rick Bertrand met on March 2. The bill passed out of the Senate State Government Committee on March 4 with an amendment.

    • HF 584 (Formerly HSB 178) Radon Testing in Schools. A subcommittee of Representatives of John Kooiker, Tedd Gassman, and Art Staed met on March 3. The bill was voted out of the House Local Government Committee on March 4 and referred to the House Education Committee on March 9. A subcommittee of Representatives Jake Highfill, Art Staed, and Norlin Mossmen has been assigned.

    Other Bills of Interest

    • SF 166/HF 281 (Formerly SSB 1068/HSB 47) Fantasy Sports Contests. SF 166 passed out of the Senate Chamber, with an amendment, by a vote of 32-16 on March 12. It has been placed on the House Unfinished Business Calendar since the companion bill, HF 281, has  already been passed out of the House State Government Committee. 

    Other Information

    • Agency Reports. To review any report filed with the General Assembly by executive branch agencies, including IDPH, please click here.

    • The Iowa General Assembly website is a great source of legislative information. The address is www.legis.iowa.gov. Take a few minutes to check out the wealth of resources available.

  • 03 Mar 2015 10:45 AM | Lara Marsh (Administrator)

    On Thursday, February 26, Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Charles Schumer (D-NY) introduced S. 578, the Home Health Care Planning and Improvement Act of 2015. This legislation, once enacted, will have an immediate impact on the quality of life and timeliness of care for Medicare patients by allowing NPs to certify home health care orders.

    Currently, NPs are recognized under state laws and regulations that allow them to complete and sign physical examination forms and other medical certification documents. However, under current Medicare law, NPs with patients who need home health care services must locate a physician who will document the NP's assessment for this care.  Enactment of the Home Health Care Planning and Improvement Act of 2015 will make it possible for NPs to provide the required certification for Medicare patients under their care.  Passage of this legislation will reduce Medicare spending by eliminating duplicative services while also improving the quality and timeliness of care for beneficiaries who need home health care services.

    AANP thanks Senators Collins and Schumer for taking this important first legislative step toward improving patients' lives, and the organization pledges its continued support for swift action this year.  We ask that you contact your Senators and ask them to support this important legislation.

    Sherry, INPS President


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Theresa Hohertz,

president@iowanpsociety.org

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Michelle Hunerdosse
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