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House of Representatives
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: March 4, 2019 03:30 PM
From: Representative Kathy L. Rapp
To: All House members
Subject: Perinatal Hospice
I plan to introduce legislation in the near future that will require information to be given to a woman on the option of perinatal hospice care after she is diagnosed with a life-threatening fetal anomaly.

As some background, perinatal hospice is a model of support for parents who choose to continue their pregnancies following a prenatal diagnosis indicating that their baby has a life-limiting condition and might die before or shortly after birth. Perinatal hospice is provided from the time of diagnosis through the baby's birth and death. As prenatal screening and diagnostic methods continue to advance, increasingly more fetal anomalies are being detected at an early stage in pregnancy and more families are finding themselves in this heartbreaking situation. Unfortunately, most women and their families are not presented with the option of perinatal hospice.

My legislation will require information to be given to a woman on the option of perinatal hospice care after her unborn child is diagnosed with a life-limiting condition. Further, the Department of Health will be responsible for making this information available, which will include a list of perinatal hospice programs in the Commonwealth.

Minnesota became the first state to enact a provision for perinatal hospice care into law in 2005, with five other states--- Kansas, Arizona, Oklahoma, Mississippi, and Indiana—following shortly thereafter. Several other states are considering similar proposals.

It is my hope that you will join me in cosponsoring this important legislation.

Introduced as HB1058