Human Resources Committee Report – week 14, 2017

HF 232—Death pronouncements in correctional facilities
HF 233—Step Therapy exception protocol
HF 234—County Mental Health Advocate reporting
HF 393—Department of Public Health omnibus bill
HF 396—Definition of foster care
HF 534—School district child care programs
HF 543—Changes to drug endangered child definition
HF 545—Information release regarding fatalities and near fatalities
HF 576—Temporary staffing background checks


HF 232 allows nurses and physician assistants to sign off on pronouncements of death in correctional facilities.
[4/10: 48-0 (Allen, Taylor excused)]


HF 233 relates to step therapy, which is a cost-containment tool often used by health insurance plans that requires patients to first try and fail on one or more medications not prescribed by their physician before the plan will authorize coverage for the originally prescribed medication. The bill includes policies that protect the physician-patient relationship by ensuring that step therapy protocols are developed with a clear and timely process, and giving the physician the ability to immediately override the step therapy protocol in certain cases.
[4/10: 47-0 (Allen, D. Johnson, Kapucian excused)]


HF 234 ends the requirement that county mental health advocates file quarterly reports. Advocates will file reports when necessary or when required by the Court.
[4/10: 48-0 (Allen, Taylor excused)]


HF 393 is the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) policy bill. The bill provides some flexibility to IDPH with substance abuse funding that is not used by counties, and is and returned to the department. The funds will be used for other substance abuse programs. Updates are made to the Medical Home & Patient Centered Health Council to reflect current duties and responsibilities. It updates Code language for various workforce programs. It complements IDPH activities around review and evaluation of current workforce programming. The bill removes unfunded and outdated programs, and makes conforming changes to the Code.
[4/11: 49-0 (Allen excused)]


HF 396 defines foster care. It does NOT include situations where parents have asked relatives to care for their children for a time.
[4/11: 49-0 (Allen excused)]


HF 534 excludes child care programs administered by school districts from Department of Human Services licensing.
[4/10: 48-0 (Allen, Taylor excused)]


HF 543 represents the recommendations of the 2016 Drug Endangered Children Task Force. The Department of Human Services has already made the practice changes. The bill amends the definitions of “child in need of assistance” and “child abuse” to include additional adults in the home who use, possess, cultivate or distribute a dangerous substance. It adds cocaine, heroin and opioids to the list of dangerous substances.
[4/10: 48-0 (Allen, Taylor excused)]


HF 545 relates to the Department of Human Services release of information policies and makes clarifications to fatalities and near fatalities. The bill aligns state and federal law.
[4/10: 48-0 (Allen, Taylor excused)]


HF 576 requires that temporary staffing agencies conduct background checks on employees for nursing homes, assisted living centers, etc., instead of the nursing homes covering the costs of the checks.
[4/6: 49-0 (Bertrand absent)]