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01/25/2022 01:11 AM
Pennsylvania State Senate
https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/CSM/showMemoPublic.cfm?chamber=S&SPick=20210&cosponId=35753
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Senate Co-Sponsorship Memoranda

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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session

MEMORANDUM

Posted: May 28, 2021 10:54 AM
From: Senator Devlin J. Robinson
To: All Senate members
Subject: Substance Use Disorder/Mental Health Treatment Improvement
 
In the near future, I plan to introduce a package of three bills intended to help those with Substance Use Disorder (SUD) and mental health diagnoses by modernizing current law to align with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) standards already in place. This package is designed to improve and update the continuum of care by enabling a holistic approach supported by clinical best practices which include patient engagement, education, and care management support.

Currently, patients who suffer from SUD and mental health disease have medical records from private practitioners, hospitals, and drug and alcohol treatment or rehabilitation clinics that are unable to be shared with other mental health care providers, or even with physical health care providers. Existing legal provisions and conflicting standards restrict the disclosure of this information and create considerable challenges for physicians. They may also discourage providers from offering treatment services and can prevent individuals from seeking or receiving treatment because of the lack of coordination between their health care providers. This package is designed to allow for safe, HIPAA-compliant transfer of patient information to other medical professionals to facilitate an integrated approach to care.

With the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reporting a steep increase in mental health concerns throughout this past year, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, there is no better time to remove barriers to coordinated care in order to achieve positive health outcomes for our Pennsylvania citizens.

Please join me in co-sponsoring this important legislation.
 



Document #1

Introduced as SB902

Description: Amends the Mental Health Procedures Act by aligning state law with existing federal HIPAA requirements for sharing mental health-related information; permitting the sharing of mental health-related information with a “covered entity” or its “business associate” (as defined by HIPAA); and requiring updates to existing and conflicting regulatory requirements.
 

Document #2

Introduced as SB901

Description: Amends the Drug and Alcohol Abuse Control Act by aligning state law with federal HIPAA requirements for sharing substance use disorder-related information; permitting the sharing of substance use disorder-related information with a “covered entity” or its “business associate” (as defined by HIPAA); and requiring updates to existing and conflicting regulatory requirements.
 

Document #3

Description: Amendments to Act 191 of 2014, granting insurers access to the state’s Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) database and defining key terms.