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PRINTER'S NO. 635
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
HOUSE BILL
No.
424
Session of
2019
INTRODUCED BY HEFFLEY, RYAN, STAATS, T. DAVIS, KINSEY, MILLARD,
MURT, TOEPEL, BOBACK, HILL-EVANS, SAYLOR, KAUFER, SIMMONS,
KORTZ AND MASSER, MARCH 1, 2019
REFERRED TO COMMITTEE ON HUMAN SERVICES, MARCH 1, 2019
AN ACT
Providing for the warm hand-off of overdose survivors to
addiction treatment, for a comprehensive warm hand-off
initiative; establishing the Warm Hand-Off Initiative Grant
Program; providing for consents and for immunity;
establishing the Overdose Recovery Task Force; and providing
for overdose stabilization and warm hand-off centers, for
rules and regulations and for annual reports.
The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
hereby enacts as follows:
Section 1. Short title.
This act shall be known and may be cited as the Warm Hand-Off
to Treatment Act.
Section 2. Legislative findings.
The General Assembly finds and declares as follows:
(1) In 2017, 72,000 Americans died of drug overdoses,
quadrupling the number of fatal overdoses that occurred in
the year 2000 and making today's opioid epidemic the worst
epidemic in 100 years.
(2) This Commonwealth had approximately 5,460 overdose
deaths in 2017, more than any other state.
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(3) First responders, including emergency medical
services providers, firefighters, law enforcement officers,
social workers, members of the recovery community and family
members, have heroically escalated their lifesaving overdose
reversal efforts, all resulting in many more lives saved and
many more overdose survivors entering the emergency health
care systems.
(4) First responders are reporting that many whose
overdoses are reversed are overdosing repeatedly, indicating
that most overdose survivors are not being successfully
transitioned to treatment and recovery support services,
placing themselves at grave risk of death, and causing
extraordinary strain and suffering to their families and
communities, including first responder and health care system
services.
(5) It is urgent that every effort be made to
successfully transition overdose survivors to treatment and
recovery support services, based on an individualized
assessment and application of clinical placement criteria.
Section 3. Purpose.
The purpose of this act is to:
(1) Ensure that effective practices are used by
emergency medical services providers so that overdose victims
are medically stabilized.
(2) Ensure that emergency medical services protocols are
used by emergency medical services providers and emergency
departments so that stabilized overdose survivors are
successfully transferred to appropriate treatment and
recovery support services, as determined by an individualized
treatment plan based on an assessment and clinical placement
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criteria.
(3) Ensure that the Commonwealth works with all relevant
stakeholders to develop a network of overdose stabilization
and warm hand-off centers where emergency medical service
providers can directly transport overdose survivors for
medical stabilization, detoxification, assessment, referral
and direct placement to individualized treatment and recovery
support services.
(4) Ensure that the Commonwealth works with all relevant
stakeholders to ensure that the full continuum of addiction
treatment and recovery support services are available and
coordinated in order to facilitate each overdose survivor's
long-term individual process of recovery.
(5) Ensure that the Commonwealth has the necessary
treatment and recovery support capacity to address the need
for all of the overdose survivors.
Section 4. Definitions.
The following words and phrases when used in this act shall
have the meanings given to them in this section unless the
context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Department." The Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs of
the Commonwealth.
"Detoxification facility." A facility licensed by the
department to engage in the process whereby an alcohol-
intoxicated, drug-intoxicated, alcohol-dependent or drug-
dependent individual is assisted through the period of time to
eliminate, by metabolic or other means, the intoxicating alcohol
or other drugs, alcohol and other drug dependency factors or
alcohol in combination with drugs as determined by a licensed
physician, while keeping the physiological risk to the patient
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at a minimum.
"Drug." The following:
(1) An article recognized in the official United States
Pharmacopeia, official Homeopathic Pharmacopeia of the United
States, official National Formulary or any supplement of
those publications.
(2) An article intended for use in the diagnosis, cure,
mitigation, treatment or prevention of disease in humans or
animals.
(3) An article, other than food, intended to affect the
structure or any function of the body of a human or animal.
(4) An article intended for use as a component of any
article specified in paragraph (1), (2) or (3). The term does
not include devices or their components, parts or
accessories.
"Emergency department." A hospital emergency department, a
free-standing emergency department or a health clinic where the
clinic carries out emergency department functions.
"Emergency department personnel." A physician, physician's
assistant, nurse, paramedic, medical assistant, nurse aide and
other health care professional working in an emergency
department.
"Emergency medical services agency." As defined in 35
Pa.C.S. § 8103 (relating to definitions).
"Emergency medical services provider." As defined in 35
Pa.C.S. § 8103.
"Harm reduction services." A range of public health policies
designed to lessen the negative social and physical consequences
associated with substance use, both legal and illegal, while
engaging an individual to seek further assistance for a
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substance use disorder.
"Intervention services." Services provided by an individual
with training and knowledge about the system of substance use
disorder treatment options available in the local community and
who has specific expertise in interventions with overdose
survivors through a process where the substance user is
encouraged to accept help.
"Overdose." Injury to the body that happens when a drug is
taken in excessive amounts, which can be fatal or nonfatal.
"Peer specialist." An individual certified as a peer
specialist by a Statewide certification body which is a member
of a national certification body or an individual who is
certified by another state's substance abuse counseling
certification board.
"Recovery support services." Informational, emotional and
intentional support, including, but not limited to:
(1) Developing a one-on-one relationship in which a peer
specialist encourages, motivates and supports a peer in
recovery.
(2) Connecting the peer with professional and
nonprofessional services and resources available in the
community.
(3) Facilitating or leading recovery-oriented group
activities, including support groups and educational
activities.
(4) Helping the peer make new friends and build healthy
social networks through emotional, instrumental,
informational and affiliation types of peer support.
"Substance use disorder treatment provider." A substance use
disorder facility or treatment program that is licensed by the
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Commonwealth to provide comprehensive alcohol or other drug
addiction treatment and recovery support services, with or
without the support of addiction medications, on a hospital,
nonhospital residential or outpatient basis. The term shall
include a physician with expertise in providing or coordinating
access to comprehensive detoxification, medication, treatment
and long-term recovery support services.
"Task force." The Overdose Recovery Task Force established
under section 8.
"Treatment." Substance use disorder treatment for alcohol or
other drug addiction with a substance use disorder treatment
provider in accordance with an individualized assessment and
clinical placement criteria.
"Warm hand-off." The direct referral and transfer of an
overdose survivor immediately after medical stabilization to:
(1) a licensed detoxification facility or other medical
facility for detoxification; or
(2) to a substance use disorder treatment provider, with
treatment matched to the individual's clinical needs, based
on a biopsychosocial assessment and application of clinical
placement criteria and coordinated with recovery support
services. The term shall also include face-to-face or other
follow-up contact with recent overdose survivors by first
responders and individuals providing intervention services to
encourage entry into treatment and the provision of harm
reduction services to overdose survivors who persistently
refuse referral and transfer to a detoxification facility for
treatment.
Section 5. Comprehensive warm hand-off initiative.
(a) Development.--The department shall collaborate with the
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Department of Health and other appropriate State and local
agencies to develop a warm hand-off initiative to medically
stabilize overdose survivors and directly transfer the overdose
survivors to a detoxification facility, or other medical
facility, for detoxification or to a substance use disorder
treatment provider for recovery support services and a course of
treatment and recovery support, in accordance with an
individualized assessment and application of clinical placement
criteria. Services provided by the warm hand-off initiative
shall also be available to any other individual seeking
treatment for a substance use disorder. The warm hand-off
initiative shall be developed within one year of the effective
date of this section and shall include, but not be limited to,
the following:
(1) Partnerships between the department, county drug and
alcohol administrators and emergency departments as follows:
(i) The department shall direct county drug and
alcohol administrators to establish partnerships with all
emergency departments in their respective localities and
to assist those emergency departments to implement warm
hand-off procedures for overdose survivors. Assistance
may include, but not be limited to, working with
emergency departments to ensure that intervention
services are available in a timely fashion.
(ii) Owners and operators of emergency departments
shall take reasonable steps to train and credential any
individuals providing intervention services, using the
emergency department's established credentialing process
for staff and vendors providing care, in order to
facilitate unhindered communication between the
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individual providing intervention services and the
overdose survivor.
(iii) County drug and alcohol administrators shall
regularly assess the network of available detoxification
facilities, medical facilities providing detoxification
services, substance use treatment providers and recovery
support services and communicate the findings of the
assessment to all individuals providing intervention
services for overdose survivors, so that a backlog of
referrals does not occur.
(iv) County drug and alcohol administrators shall
regularly assess the network of services that address the
needs of individuals in recovery and the families of
overdose survivors and shall work with emergency
departments to ensure that appropriate mechanisms are in
place to connect those families to needed services.
(2) Prioritizing overdose survivors for substance use
disorder treatment as follows:
(i) The department shall direct county drug and
alcohol administrators to include overdose survivors as
one of the department's prioritized populations for
Federal Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block
Grant (SABG) funding, in accordance with individualized
assessments and clinical placement criteria.
(ii) The department shall work with county drug and
alcohol administrators, emergency medical services
providers, substance use disorder treatment providers and
the recovery support services community to gather the
following data, which shall be included in the patient
care reports and shall be published and annually updated
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on the department's publicly accessible Internet website:
(A) The number of individuals treated by
emergency medical services providers for overdoses.
(B) Levels of care and lengths of stay of
overdose survivors in Medicaid facilities and Federal
SABG-funded treatment provider facilities.
(C) The number of Medicaid-funded and Federal
SABG-funded overdose survivors in treatment who
received a lower level of care or shorter length of
stay than determined necessary by the physician or
the treatment provider using the required placement
criteria.
(D) Of the individuals identified in clause (C),
the number who received a lower level of care or
shorter length of stay in treatment than determined
necessary due to lack of funding, patients leaving
against medical advice and any other reasons
identified by the department.
(E) Any other trends or observations deemed
significant by the department, county drug and
alcohol administrators, emergency medical services
providers, substance use disorder treatment providers
or the recovery support services community which may
include possible correlation in variations of the
level of care and lengths of stay in treatment, with
geographic region, behavioral health managed care
organization, treatment program and other factors
considered.
(3) Training in effective warm hand-off protocols for
emergency medical services providers as follows:
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(i) The Department of Health, in collaboration with
the department, shall develop warm hand-off emergency
medical service training curriculum for emergency medical
services providers addressing the most effective
protocols to successfully transport overdose survivors to
emergency departments for medical stabilization or, where
available, to overdose stabilization and warm hand-off
centers created under section 8.
(ii) The Department of Health, in collaboration with
the department and individuals from the recovery support
services community, shall develop a training curriculum
for emergency medical services providers that addresses:
(A) The elements of addiction, stigma, treatment
referral, recommended safety procedures to limit
first responder exposure to the drugs involved and
effective strategies for immediate and expeditious
transport of the overdose survivor after
administration of an opioid overdose reversal drug in
order to maximize the likelihood of successful
transport of patients.
(B) The necessary skills to determine when it is
appropriate to directly transfer an overdose survivor
to an overdose stabilization and warm hand-off
center, but only if the emergency medical services
providers subject to the training are authorized and
directed by protocol developed under this act to
directly transport certain medically stabilized
overdose survivors to an overdose stabilization and
warm hand-off center without transportation to an
emergency department.
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(C) Effective protocols and skills for
participating in face-to-face or other follow-up
contact with recent overdose survivors to encourage
and facilitate entry into treatment, including
alliances with recovery support services for the
follow-up contacts, to successfully engage overdose
survivors.
(iii) The curriculum developed under subparagraphs
(i) and (ii) shall be in compliance with the standards of
the Commission on Accreditation for Prehospital
Continuing Education and be approved by the department
and the Bureau of Emergency Medical Services of the
Department of Health. The training shall be mandatory for
all emergency medical services providers and, in
accordance with standards provided by the Department of
Health in consultation with the department, shall require
competency assurance of the necessary cognitive,
psychomotor and affective skills upon completion of the
program of instruction, as a condition of licensure
renewal.
(4) Training in substance use disorders, intervention
and referral to treatment for emergency department personnel
as follows:
(i) The Department of Health, in collaboration with
the department and individuals from the recovery support
services community, shall promulgate a training
curriculum in the effective warm hand-off to treatment of
drug overdose survivors which shall address the basic
elements of addiction, stigma, referral to treatment,
recovery support services, the recovery community and
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effective strategies for interacting with the recently
reversed overdose survivor to maximize the likelihood
that there will be a successful and immediate warm hand-
off to treatment. The curriculum shall also include harm
reduction services for individuals who decline treatment.
Ongoing emphasis on engagement in treatment shall be a
required element of harm reduction services.
(ii) The curriculum shall be approved by the
department and the Department of Health. The training
shall be mandatory for all emergency department personnel
and, in accordance with the standards provided by the
Department of Health in consultation with the department,
shall require competency assurance of the necessary
cognitive, psychomotor and affective skills upon
completion of the program of instruction as a condition
of licensure renewal. The training may satisfy the
emergency department personnel's patient safety
continuing medical education requirements. The providers
of the training shall include individuals who are in
recovery.
(b) Warm Hand-Off Initiative Grant Program.--The following
shall apply:
(1) The Warm Hand-Off Initiative Grant Program is
established and shall be administered by the department.
Grants provided under the program shall be used to
incentivize the development of successful warm hand-off
programs and operations established under this act. Awards
shall be granted with highest priority to overdose
stabilization centers that:
(i) Are licensed by the department as a
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detoxification facility.
(ii) Have properly credentialed staff that are
experienced in substance use disorder assessments,
including the use of the Pennsylvania Client Placement
Criteria.
(iii) Offer therapeutic engagement with overdose
survivors.
(iv) Are connected with a network of treatment
providers for all modalities and levels of care to which
patients may be transferred.
(v) Have medical staff with expertise in overdose
stabilization for all commonly misused drugs.
(2) The department shall transmit notice of the grant
program availability to the Legislative Reference Bureau for
publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin by December 1, 2019,
for the fiscal years beginning July 1, 2020.
(3) The department may award grants from the Warm Hand-
Off Initiative Grant Program for the following:
(i) To emergency departments, for one or more of the
following:
(A) Implementing warm hand-off procedures for
overdose survivors, as described under subsection (a)
(1).
(B) Training and credentialing individuals
providing intervention services, as described under
subsection (a)(1).
(C) Training emergency department personnel in
substance use disorders, intervention and referral to
treatment, as described under subsection (a)(4).
(ii) To emergency medical services providers, for
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the purpose of training emergency medical service
personnel in effective warm hand-off protocols, as
described under subsection (a)(3).
(iii) To county drug and alcohol administrators, for
the purpose of assisting in the assessment of the network
of available detoxification facilities, medical
facilities providing detoxification services, substance
use treatment providers and recovery support services and
communicating the findings of the assessment to all
individuals providing intervention services for overdose
survivors, as described under subsection (a)(1).
(4) The following limits on grants shall apply:
(i) Grants shall be not less than $25,000 per award.
(ii) Only one grant shall be awarded per county in
this Commonwealth.
(iii) Grants may be awarded on a pro rata basis if
the total dollar amount of the approved application
exceeds the amount of funds appropriated by the General
Assembly for this purpose.
(5) Time for filing an application and department action
is as follows:
(i) By September 1, 2020, and each year thereafter,
the department shall provide written instructions for
grants under this section to all county drug and alcohol
administrators and to the president of every emergency
department and emergency medical service provider in this
Commonwealth.
(ii) By September 8, 2020, and each year thereafter,
the department shall provide applications for grants to
the individuals specified in paragraph (1).
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(iii) Emergency departments, emergency medical
services providers and county drug and alcohol
administrators seeking grants under this section shall
submit a completed application to the department in order
to be eligible for an award.
(iv) The application period shall remain open for 45
days each year. The department shall act to approve or
disapprove applications within 60 days of the application
submission deadline each year. Applications that have not
been approved or disapproved by the department within 60
days after the close of the application period each year
shall be deemed approved.
(6) The department may receive gifts, grants and
endowments from public or private sources as may be made from
time to time, in trust and otherwise, for the use and benefit
of the purposes of the Warm Hand-Off initiative Grant Program
and expand the same or any income derived from it according
to the term of the gifts, grants or endowments. In addition,
the department shall aggressively pursue all Federal funding,
matching funds and foundation funding for the Warm Hand-Off
Initiative Grant Program. The money received under this
paragraph shall be deposited into a restricted account in the
State Treasury. Money in the restricted account shall be
appropriated to the department on a continuing basis.
(c) Emergency department implementation.--The following
shall apply:
(1) Within six months of the effective date of this act,
the Department of Health shall require, as a condition of
licensure for the owner or operation of an emergency
department, a written report from each emergency department
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that meets the standards required under this act, which shall
include, but not be limited to:
(i) A description of the emergency department's warm
hand-off procedures.
(ii) Certification from the county drug and alcohol
administrator of the emergency department's partnership
with the county drug and alcohol administrator to attain
the most effective possible warm hand-off outcomes.
(iii) The number of overdose patients:
(A) Treated in the emergency department.
(B) Screened to be in need of treatment.
(C) Successfully transferred to treatment.
(D) Refusing treatment and the reasons given.
(E) Who return to the emergency department on a
subsequent occasion.
(iv) The emergency department's action plan to
continue to improve warm hand-off outcomes.
(v) Results of monitoring staff sensitivity,
antistigma and antidiscrimination efforts within the
emergency department, including an action plan to address
staff training and sensitivity needs.
(2) The reporting under this subsection shall be
required annually for five years following the effective date
of this section and biannually thereafter.
(3) The department and the Department of Health shall
develop and publish minimum warm hand-off protocol and
reporting requirements for emergency departments.
(d) Eligibility to be a provider and coverage for warm hand-
off initiative.--The following shall apply:
(1) The Department of Human Services shall require
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emergency medical services providers with patient transport
capability, emergency departments and personnel working
within each of those entities to demonstrate compliance with
the requirements of subsections (a)(3) and (4) and (c) in
order to be eligible to be a participating provider in the
Medicaid network.
(2) The Department of Human Services shall establish and
provide reasonable and fair reimbursement rates approved by
the department for the services provided for under this act.
The rates shall include, but not be limited to, full and fair
reimbursement for:
(i) An emergency medical services provider
successfully transporting overdose victims for medical
stabilization at an emergency department or an overdose
stabilization and warm hand-off center.
(ii) An emergency medical services provider
successfully medically stabilizing an overdose survivor
and successfully transporting the individual to a
detoxification facility or overdose stabilization and
warm hand-off center.
(iii) Follow-up contact with recent overdose
survivors by an emergency medical services provider or
others engaging in intervention services to encourage and
facilitate entry into treatment.
(iv) Intervention services and warm hand-off
services.
(v) Case management providing support, guidance and
navigation of the treatment and recovery systems.
(3) The reimbursement rates shall take into account the
providers' costs in meeting the training, data reporting and
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other requirements of this act and shall be designed to
incentivize and reward positive outcomes for successful
medical stabilization of overdose victims and successful
assessment and transfer of the overdose victims to clinically
appropriate detoxification and treatment programs.
(e) Private health insurance coverage for warm hand-off
initiative.--The following shall apply:
(1) The Insurance Department, in consultation with the
department, shall require all health insurers providing
coverage in this Commonwealth to establish and provide
reasonable and fair reimbursement rates. The rates shall
include, but not be limited to, full and fair reimbursement
for:
(i) An emergency medical services provider
successfully transporting overdose victims for medical
stabilization at an emergency department or an overdose
stabilization and warm hand-off center.
(ii) An emergency medical services provider
successfully medically stabilizing an overdose survivor
and successfully transporting the individual to a
detoxification facility or overdose stabilization and
warm hand-off center.
(iii) Follow-up contact with recent overdose
survivors by an emergency medical services provider or
intervention specialists to encourage and facilitate
entry into treatment.
(iv) Intervention and warm hand-off services.
(v) Case management providing support, guidance and
navigation of the treatment and recovery systems.
(2) The reimbursement rates shall take into account the
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providers' costs in meeting the training, data reporting and
other requirements of this act, and shall be designed to
incentivize and reward positive outcomes for successful
medical stabilization of overdose victims and successful
assessment and transfer of these overdose victims to
clinically appropriate detoxification and treatment programs.
(3) The Insurance Department shall require all health
insurers providing coverage in this Commonwealth to eliminate
preauthorization requirements for treatment in instances
where an overdose survivor is transported to treatment under
this act.
Section 6. Consents.
(a) General rule.--The attending physician in an emergency
department, or a physician's designee, shall make reasonable
efforts to obtain a patient's signed consent to disclose
information about the patient's drug overdose to family members
or others involved in the patient's health care.
(b) Exception.--If the consent cannot practicably be
provided because of the patient's incapacity or a serious and
imminent threat to a patient's health or safety, the physician,
or physician's designee, may disclose information about a
patient's drug overdose in compliance with applicable privacy
and confidentially laws and regulations, including:
(1) The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability
Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-191, 110 Stat. 1936).
(2) 42 CFR Pt. 2 (relating to confidentiality of
substance use disorder patient records).
(3) 45 CFR Pt. 160 (relating to general administrative
requirements).
(4) 45 CFR Pt. 164 (relating to security and privacy).
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(5) 42 U.S.C. § 290dd-2 (relating to confidentiality of
records).
(6) Any relevant State law related to the privacy,
confidentially and disclosure of protected health
information.
(7) Any policies or regulations of the department
governing the care of and protection of client information.
Section 7. Immunity.
(a) Emergency medical services agencies and providers.--
Absent evidence of a malicious intent to cause harm, no
emergency medical services agency or emergency medical services
provider may be held liable for medically stabilizing, or
attempting to medically stabilize, an overdose victim or for
transporting or attempting to transport an overdose victim for
medical stabilization.
(b) Emergency department personnel.--Absent evidence of a
malicious intent to cause harm, no emergency department
personnel providing intervention services or recovery support
services may be held liable for their efforts to have overdose
survivors properly assessed and directly transferred to a
clinically appropriate detoxification facility, to treatment or
to recovery support services.
Section 8. Overdose Recovery Task Force and overdose
stabilization and warm hand-off centers.
(a) Establishment.--The Overdose Recovery Task Force is
established. The task force shall consist of the following
members:
(1) The Secretary of Drug and Alcohol Programs or a
designee.
(2) The Secretary of Health or a designee.
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(3) The Secretary of Human Services or a designee.
(4) The Secretary of Corrections or a designee.
(5) A representative from the following professional
associations in this Commonwealth:
(i) Law enforcement.
(ii) Fire departments.
(iii) Emergency medical services.
(iv) Behavioral health providers.
(v) Hospital administration.
(vi) Addiction treatment providers.
(vii) Peer specialists.
(viii) Recovery organizations.
(6) An individual who is in recovery.
(b) Purpose.--
(1) The initial purpose of the task force shall be to
develop and implement overdose stabilization and warm hand-
off centers. Overdose stabilization and warm hand-off centers
shall be staffed locations that can medically oversee the
stabilization of overdose survivors, begin detoxification,
engage survivors with intervention specialists, complete full
addiction assessment and referral and connect survivors to
all modalities and levels of treatment, depending on the
survivor's individual clinical needs.
(2) Overdose stabilization and warm hand-off centers
shall address the needs of survivors' families and utilize
them in the engagement and treatment of the survivors, as
appropriate.
(c) Expansion of current services.--The task force may
explore mechanisms to expand, where feasible, the function of
currently existing crisis health care facilities so that they
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can serve as overdose stabilization and warm hand-off centers,
in addition to their current functions.
(d) Development of overdose stabilization and warm hand-off
centers.--The development and implementation of overdose
stabilization and warm hand-off centers undertaken by the task
force shall include:
(1) Identifying the areas that will benefit most from
the placement of overdose stabilization and warm hand-off
centers through an analysis of population density and number
of overdose deaths.
(2) Creating the design, staffing structure and
operational protocols of the overdose stabilization and warm
hand-off centers, which may include consideration of existing
detoxification facilities with expanded capacity and
functions.
(3) Expanding the functions of currently existing crisis
health care facilities so that they can also serve as
overdose stabilization and warm hand-off centers.
(4) Identifying funding sources for overdose
stabilization and warm hand-off centers.
(5) Establishing a new licensing category to cover the
overdose stabilization and warm hand-off centers.
(e) Requirements.--The operations of each overdose
stabilization and warm hand-off center shall include, at a
minimum, the following:
(1) The capacity to safely medically stabilize and
manage the chronic non-life threatening medical needs of
overdose survivors.
(2) The ability to identify overdose survivors whose
medical situations are sufficiently complex to require
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immediate transportation to an emergency department, based
upon developed protocols.
(3) State licensure as a medical, nonhospital
residential or hospital detoxification facility.
(4) Intervention services conducted by staff with
specific expertise in therapeutically engaging individuals
who have just survived an overdose.
(5) Treatment assessments with physicians or other
clinicians with certified expertise in undertaking drug and
alcohol assessments and applying appropriate clinical
placement criteria.
(6) Working relationships with treatment programs of all
modalities, including programs that provide family
preservation services, in the reasonable vicinity of the
overdose stabilization and warm hand-off center.
(7) Development of protocols and referral agreements to
govern the transfer of patients to and from emergency
departments and treatment programs.
(8) Access to direct transportation from the overdose
stabilization and warm hand-off center to treatment programs.
(f) Evaluation.--The task force shall periodically evaluate
the performance and effectiveness of the overdose stabilization
and warm hand-off centers and gather and make recommendations
for continuous quality improvements.
(g) Application.--Sections 6 and 7(b) shall apply to
overdose stabilization and warm hand-off centers developed under
this section.
Section 9. Rules and regulations.
The department, Department of Health and Department of Human
Services shall promulgate rules and regulations necessary to
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implement their responsibilities under this act.
Section 10. Annual report.
(a) General rule.--The department, in consultation with the
Department of Health, shall provide an annual report to the
General Assembly documenting the following:
(1) Compliance with the requirements of this act.
(2) The number of overdose survivors successfully being
transferred to and engaged in treatment.
(3) The number of warm hand-off centers in operation.
(4) The total number of overdose victims each warm hand-
off center has received.
(5) The total amount of funds awarded from the Warm
Hand-Off Initiative Grant Program in the previous year and
the amount each grantee received.
(b) Publication.--The annual report shall be published on
the publicly accessible Internet websites of the department and
the Department of Health.
Section 11. Severability.
The provisions of this act are severable. If any provision of
this act or application of this act to any individual or
circumstance is held invalid, the invalidity shall not affect
other provisions or applications of this act which can be given
effect without the invalid provisions or applications.
Section 12. Effective date.
This act shall take effect in 60 days.
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