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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session


Posted: October 22, 2021 05:40 PM
From: Senator Lisa M. Boscola
To: All Senate members
Subject: Mandatory Reporting of Infants Born with Addiction
I plan to introduce legislation that requires the reporting of any infant born with an addiction to opioids or other illegal substances within the Commonwealth.  With the conclusion of the Opioid Disaster Declaration of Emergency, advocates have contacted my office concerned about the continued statutory authority for the Department of Health to track and report on this information.  This bill aims to resolve any uncertainty and mandate the reporting and tracking of this information.
The reporting of this information during the opioid emergency declaration confirmed the benefit of real time reporting of infants born with an opioid addiction and high susceptibility of withdrawal conditions.  The youngest and most innocent victims of this crisis are already born without a voice and without any say to their addiction and subsequent withdrawal.  We need to make certain that this information continues to be reported.

Last session, this bill passed the senate unanimously, and it will continue to be my goal to work with the Department of Health in addressing this problem, while also ensuring confidentiality to patients and infants during this time. Hospitals remain one of the safest places of sanctuary for individuals, and an expecting mother already facing an addiction to an illegal substance is at high enough risk for complications that could result in loss of life.

I hope you too share my concern with the lack of this mandatory reporting and subsequent effect on not having the most updated data. Please join me in co-sponsoring this legislation.

Introduced as SB936