23c6501h

 

 

CHAPTER 65

NEWBORN PROTECTION

 

Sec.

6501.  Short title of chapter.

6502.  Definitions.

6503.  Nonliability.

6504.  Accepting newborns.

6505.  Reporting acceptance of newborns.

6506.  Failure to report acceptance of newborns.

6507.  Immunity granted to health care providers and hospitals.

6508.  Duty of hospital.

6509.  Duties of department.

 

Enactment.  Chapter 65 was added December 9, 2002, P.L.1549, No.201, effective in 60 days.

Cross References.  Chapter 65 is referred to in section 6315 of this title; section 4306 of Title 18 (Crimes and Offenses).

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§ 6501.  Short title of chapter.

This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the Newborn Protection Act.

23c6502s

§ 6502.  Definitions.

The following words and phrases when used in this chapter shall have the meanings given to them in this section unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

"Child abuse."  Child abuse as defined in section 6303(b) (relating to definitions).

"County agency" or "agency."  County agency as defined in section 6303(a) (relating to definitions).

"Department."  The Department of Public Welfare of the Commonwealth.

"Health care provider."  A person who is licensed or certified by the laws of this Commonwealth to administer health care in the ordinary course of business or practice of a profession. For purposes of accepting a newborn as provided in section 6504(a)(1) (relating to accepting newborns) and for immunity provided pursuant to section 6507 (relating to immunity granted to health care providers and hospitals), the term includes administrative, managerial and security personnel and any other person employed by a hospital.

"Hospital."  An institution having an organized medical staff which is primarily engaged in providing to inpatients, by or under the supervision of physicians, diagnostic and therapeutic services or rehabilitation services for the care or rehabilitation of people who are injured, disabled, pregnant, diseased, sick or mentally ill. The term includes facilities for the diagnosis and treatment of disorders within the scope of specific medical specialties, but not facilities caring exclusively for people with mental illness or those facilities primarily engaged in providing rehabilitation services or long-term care.

"Newborn."  A child less than 28 days of age as reasonably determined by a physician.

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Cross References.  Section 6502 is referred to in section 6303 this title; section 4306 of Title 18 (Crimes and Offenses).

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§ 6503.  Nonliability.

A parent of a newborn shall not be criminally liable under any provision of Title 18 (relating to crimes and offenses) if the criteria set forth in 18 Pa.C.S § 4306 (relating to newborn protection) are met.

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§ 6504.  Accepting newborns.

(a)  General rule.--A health care provider at a hospital shall do all of the following relating to a newborn accepted under this chapter:

(1)  Take the newborn into protective custody as provided in section 6315(a)(3) (relating to taking child into protective custody).

(2)  Perform a medical evaluation as well as perform any act necessary to care for and protect the physical health and safety of the newborn.

(3)  Notify the county agency and the local municipal police department or the Pennsylvania State Police where no municipal police jurisdiction exists as provided in section 6505 (relating to reporting acceptance of newborns).

(b)  Accepting newborns.--When accepting a newborn pursuant to this chapter, a parent may provide a health care provider with information about the newborn's medical history and any identifying information.

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Cross References.  Section 6504 is referred to in section 6502 of this title.

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§ 6505.  Reporting acceptance of newborns.

A health care provider at a hospital shall in all cases notify the county agency and the local municipal police department or the Pennsylvania State Police where no municipal police jurisdiction exists immediately by telephone regarding a newborn accepted by a hospital under this chapter. A written report shall be submitted to the county agency and local municipal police department or the Pennsylvania State Police within 48 hours after the oral report. For purposes of this section, the term "health care provider" shall include administrative, managerial and security personnel employed by a hospital.

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Cross References.  Section 6505 is referred to in section 6504 of this title.

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§ 6506.  Failure to report acceptance of newborns.

A health care provider at a hospital who intentionally or knowingly fails to report the acceptance by a hospital of a newborn as required by this chapter commits a summary offense. A second or subsequent failure to report such acceptance is a misdemeanor of the third degree.

23c6506v

 

Cross References.  Section 6506 is referred to in section 6507 of this title.

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§ 6507.  Immunity granted to health care providers and hospitals.

Except for a violation of section 6506 (relating to failure to report acceptance of newborns), no hospital or health care provider at a hospital shall be subject to civil liability or criminal penalty solely by reason of complying with the provisions of this chapter.

23c6507v

 

Cross References.  Section 6507 is referred to in section 6502 of this title.

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§ 6508.  Duty of hospital.

A hospital shall insure that its officers, health care providers and employees are familiar with the provisions of this chapter, section 6315(a)(3) (relating to taking child into protective custody) and other applicable provisions of Chapter 63 (relating to child protective services) that relate to newborn protection and shall insure that the appropriate officers, health care providers and employees, as the case may be, receive educational materials provided by the department as established under section 6509 (relating to duties of department). Information concerning this chapter, section 6315(a)(3) and other applicable provisions of Chapter 63 that relate to newborn protection and regulations adopted by the department shall be made part of the training at each hospital. Each hospital shall adopt a written policy in accordance with the provisions of this chapter, section 6315(a)(3) and other applicable provisions of Chapter 63 that relate to newborn protection.

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§ 6509.  Duties of department.

The department shall provide educational materials for use by hospitals, health care providers and employees at hospitals regarding this chapter, section 6315(a)(3) (relating to taking child into protective custody) and other applicable provisions of Chapter 63 (relating to child protective services) that relate to newborn protection. The department shall promulgate such regulations as may be necessary to implement this chapter, section 6315(a)(3) and other applicable provisions of Chapter 63 that relate to newborn protection. The department shall also provide health care providers and hospitals with an informational pamphlet regarding this chapter, section 6315(a)(3) and other applicable provisions of Chapter 63 that relate to newborn protection which may be distributed to the public. In addition, the department shall comply with the provisions regarding infant abandonment in sections 6365 (relating to services for prevention, investigation and treatment of child abuse) and 6383 (relating to education and training). A report shall be made annually to the General Assembly on the number and disposition of newborns accepted in accordance with this chapter, section 6315(a)(3) and other applicable provisions of Chapter 63 that relate to newborn protection.

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Cross References.  Section 6509 is referred to in section 6508 of this title.