First deadline for Legislature is March 2

Posted on: 3/1/17

The Legislature is now in the fourth week of session. Committee hearings have been held related to many of the more than 2,200 bills and resolutions introduced. The deadline for hearing bills in committee for the chamber in which the bill was introduced is March 2. March 23 is the deadline for bills to be voted from the floor of the first chamber.

OHA opposes bills to diminish authority of state health boards

SB 686, David/Echols, removing the authority of the Oklahoma Health Care Authority board to appoint the agency’s director and gives that authority to the governor, failed in the Senate Health and Human Services Committee by a vote of nine nay to three aye; and, SB 711, David/Echols, removing the authority of the Board of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services to appoint the commissioner of mental health and substance abuse was withdrawn from the committee’s consideration by Sen. David.

Yen passes vaccine bill from Senate committee
Sen. Ervin Yen, MD, chair of the Senate Committee on Health and Human Services, passed SB 83, a bill that modifies the conditions upon which a parent may receive the form for a non-medical exemption to childhood vaccines. The measure allows all current exemptions to vaccination. In this version, for a medical exemption, parents or guardians must acquire the signature of a physician. For non-medical exemptions, parents must view an online video provided by the State Department of Health with information regarding the benefits and risks of vaccines before acquiring said exemption.

Sen. Yen, a proponent of immunization, stated that his reason for advancing the bill, outside of improving public health, was to stand for immune compromised children with siblings that attend public school, who could be exposed to a highly contagious disease, bringing it home with them and potentially leading to otherwise preventable fatalities. OHA supports this legislation.  

To read the article on this and other legislation considered by the Senate Health and Human Services Committee click here. (Lynne White)

OHA Partners with Qualivis 

Qualivis was developed as a collaborative effort among multiple state hospital associations to meet the temporary staffing needs of member hospitals and health systems.

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