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A00955
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
HOUSE BILL
No.
1058
Session of
2019
INTRODUCED BY RAPP, CUTLER, KLUNK, PICKETT, ZIMMERMAN,
BERNSTINE, SAYLOR, KAUFFMAN, REESE, TOPPER, JOZWIAK, GROVE,
NEILSON, MURT, ECKER AND DIAMOND, APRIL 5, 2019
AS REPORTED FROM COMMITTEE ON HEALTH, HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
AS AMENDED, APRIL 29, 2019
AN ACT
Requiring that information on the option of perinatal hospice
care SUPPORT CARE PROGRAMS be given to a woman after
diagnosis of a life limiting condition; and imposing
penalties.
Providing for education about perinatal palliative care for
providers and information about perinatal palliative care for
patients that receive a diagnosis of a life limiting
condition; and imposing duties on the Department of Health.
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 Perinatal
Hospice Information COMPASSION AND CARE FOR MEDICALLY
CHALLENGING PREGNANCIES Act.
Section 2. 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:
"Abortion." The use of any means to terminate the clinically
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diagnosable pregnancy of a woman with knowledge that the
termination will, with reasonable likelihood, cause the death of
the unborn child. The term does not include procedures with the
intent to:
(1) save the life or preserve the health of an unborn
child even if the unborn child does not survive;
(2) remove a dead unborn child caused by spontaneous
abortion; or
(3) remove an ectopic pregnancy.
"Department." The Department of Health of the Commonwealth.
"HEALTH CARE PRACTITIONER." AS DEFINED IN SECTION 103 OF THE
ACT OF JULY 19, 1979 (P.L.130, NO.48), KNOWN AS THE HEALTH CARE
FACILITIES ACT.
"Life limiting condition." A fetal condition diagnosed
before birth that will with reasonable certainty result in the
death of the unborn child within three months after birth.
"Medical emergency." A condition which, on the basis of the
physician's good faith clinical judgment, complicates the
medical condition of a pregnant woman and necessitates the
immediate termination of her pregnancy to avert her death or
serious risk of substantial and irreversible impairment of a
major bodily function.
"Perinatal hospice SUPPORT CARE." Comprehensive support to
the pregnant woman and her family that includes support from the
time of diagnosis through the time of birth and death of the
infant and through the postpartum period. Supportive care may
include, but is not limited to, counseling and medical care by
maternal-fetal medical specialists, obstetricians,
neonatologists, anesthesia specialists, clergy, social workers
and specialty nurses focused on alleviating fear and ensuring
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that the woman and her family experience the life and death of
their child in a comfortable and supportive environment.
"Physician." Any person licensed to practice medicine in
this Commonwealth. The term includes medical doctors and doctors
of osteopathy.
Section 3. Requirements.
(a) Information.--In the case of a pregnant woman who is
diagnosed as carrying an unborn child with a life limiting
condition, the physician OR HEALTH CARE PRACTITIONER who
diagnosed the woman shall provide her, orally and in person,
with information on perinatal hospice SUPPORT CARE, which shall
include a list of perinatal hospice SUPPORT CARE programs
available in this Commonwealth prepared by the department under
section 4.
(b) Waiting period.--After receiving the information, the
woman shall wait at least 24 hours before discussing her options
with the physician, including, but not limited to, perinatal
hospice. This waiting period shall run concurrent with the
waiting period under 18 Pa.C.S. ยง 3205 (relating to informed
consent).
(c) (B) Abortion not prohibited.--Nothing in this section
shall be construed as a prohibition on an abortion performed due
to a medical emergency.
Section 4. Department duties.
The department shall:
(1) Publish, in a timely manner, NO LATER THAN 90 DAYS
AFTER THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THIS ACT, PUBLISH a list of
perinatal hospice SUPPORT CARE programs available.
(2) Administer this act and promulgate regulations to
implement this act.
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(3) NO LATER THAN 90 DAYS AFTER THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF
THIS ACT, POST ALL OF THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION ON THE
DEPARTMENT'S PUBLICLY ACCESSIBLE INTERNET WEBSITE ON AN
INFORMATION SUPPORT SHEET THAT CAN BE PRINTED AND DELIVERED
BY A PHYSICIAN OR HEALTH CARE PRACTITIONER TO A PREGNANT
WOMAN FOR THE PURPOSE OF COMPLYING WITH SECTION 3(A):
(I) A STATEMENT INDICATING THAT PERINATAL SUPPORT
CARE PROGRAMS ARE AN INNOVATIVE AND COMPASSIONATE MODEL
OF SUPPORT FOR A PREGNANT WOMAN WHO FINDS OUT THAT HER
BABY HAS A LIFE LIMITING CONDITION AND WHO CHOOSES TO
CONTINUE HER PREGNANCY.
(II) A GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF THE HEALTH CARE
SERVICES AVAILABLE FROM PERINATAL SUPPORT CARE PROGRAMS.
(III) ANY APPLICABLE CONTACT INFORMATION, INCLUDING
ANY 24-HOUR PERINATAL SUPPORT CARE SERVICES AVAILABLE.
Section 5. Penalties.
(a) Violation.--A physician who violates this act is guilty
of unprofessional conduct and the physician's license for the
practice of medicine shall be subject to suspension or
revocation in accordance with procedures provided under the act
of October 5, 1978 (P.L.1109, No.261), known as the Osteopathic
Medical Practice Act, or the act of December 20, 1985 (P.L.457,
No.112), known as the Medical Practice Act of 1985.
(A) VIOLATION.--
(1) A PHYSICIAN WHO VIOLATES THIS ACT IS GUILTY OF
UNPROFESSIONAL CONDUCT AND THE PHYSICIAN'S LICENSE FOR THE
PRACTICE OF MEDICINE SHALL BE SUBJECT TO SUSPENSION OR
REVOCATION IN ACCORDANCE WITH PROCEDURES PROVIDED UNDER THE
ACT OF OCTOBER 5, 1978 (P.L.1109, NO.261), KNOWN AS THE
OSTEOPATHIC MEDICAL PRACTICE ACT, OR THE ACT OF DECEMBER 20,
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1985 (P.L.457, NO.112), KNOWN AS THE MEDICAL PRACTICE ACT OF
1985.
(2) A HEALTH CARE PRACTITIONER WHO VIOLATES THIS ACT
SHALL BE SUBJECT TO REVIEW AND DISCIPLINARY ACTION UNDER THE
LICENSURE, CERTIFICATION, REGISTRATION OR PERMIT PROVISIONS
OF LAW AND REGULATION GOVERNING THE RESPECTIVE HEALTH CARE
PRACTITIONER.
(b) Reasonable belief.--It is a defense to a violation for
failure to furnish the information required under section 3(a)
if the physician OR HEALTH CARE PRACTITIONER can demonstrate, by
a preponderance of the evidence, that the physician OR HEALTH
CARE PRACTITIONER reasonably believed that furnishing the
information would have a severely adverse effect on the physical
or mental health of the patient.
"Hospice." As defined in section 802.1 of the Health Care
Facilities Act.
"Life limiting condition." A health condition that carries a
high risk of mortality and either severely negatively impacts a
person's daily function or quality of life or excessively
strains the person's caregiver.
"Palliative care." Care that:
(1) focuses on expert assessment and management of pain
and other symptoms, assessment and support of caregiver needs
and coordination of care;
(2) attends to the physical, functional, psychological,
practical and spiritual consequences of a serious illness;
(3) is person-centered and family-centered, providing
people living with serious illness relief from the symptoms
and stress of an illness;
(4) through collaboration of an interdisciplinary care
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team, improves quality of life for the patient and the
family; and
(5) can be offered in all care settings and at any stage
of a serious illness, including through bereavement.
Section 3. Perinatal palliative care.
(a) Information for health care practitioners.--The
department shall provide information about services available
through pediatric palliative care programs, including services
for perinatal patients, to health care practitioners whose
practice includes prenatal diagnosis, counseling or management.
(b) Information for patients.--When a health care
practitioner, in the health care practitioner's best clinical
judgment, believes it is appropriate, the health care
practitioner shall provide to the health care practitioner's
patient information regarding pediatric palliative care
programs, including hospice programs, that are able to care for
perinatal patients diagnosed with a life limiting condition.
Section 4. Department duties.
The department shall:
(1) Establish a program to provide education about
pediatric palliative care, including services for perinatal
patients, for health care practitioners whose practice
includes prenatal diagnosis, counseling or management.
(2) Administer this act and promulgate regulations to
implement this act.
Section 6 5. Effective date.
This act shall take effect in 60 days.
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