|Posted:||March 13, 2017 12:10 PM|
|From:||Representative Jesse Topper|
|To:||All House members|
|Subject:||Co-sponsorship: Amending the Newborn Protection Act|
|In the near future, I will introduce legislation amending Pennsylvania’s Newborn Protection Act. This piece is modeled after a newly enacted law in Ohio which provides for two things: (1) an expanded list of caregivers to whom a parent may surrender a newborn; and (2) a program to install incubators so that newborns who are surrendered may be kept safely in a controlled environment.
Under my legislation, emergency medical responders may accept newborns relinquished by a parent. Just as under existing law which requires that a parent go to a hospital or to a police station, my legislation requires a parent to go to the grounds of a fire station or other entity which employs an emergency medical responder in order to surrender a newborn. This is, of course, to protect the safety of the child.
In addition, my legislation provides that the places which accept newborns - - hospitals, police stations, and fire stations - - may have incubators available. Please note this is not a mandatory provision. I believe that a parent may be more likely to relinquish an infant if he can do so anonymously and in a controlled environment. Just like in Ohio, my legislation requires that an alarm is set off once a newborn is placed in the incubator. A 9-1-1 call is triggered if the personnel of a hospital, police station or fire station fail to respond within a reasonable amount of time. Finally, the Department of Health is required to promulgate regulations regarding the standards for incubators.
Please join me in co-sponsoring this important legislation.
Introduced as HB1139