Schwarzenegger Signs Eight, Vetoes Seven Health-Related Bills
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) recently signed eight and vetoed seven health-related bills. Summaries appear below.
The governor signed AB 1199, by Assembly member Patty Berg (D-Santa Rosa), which will allow the Trinity Public Utility District to run the Trinity County hospital until Jan. 1, 2008, while the county helps the hospital address its financial problems (AP/San Francisco Chronicle, 10/1).
Schwarzenegger vetoed SB 1487, by Sen. Jackie Speier (D-San Mateo), which would have required hospitals to report collected data on hospital-acquired infections to the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (AP/San Francisco Chronicle, 10/1).
Schwarzenegger signed the following bills:
SB 1307, by Sen. Liz Figueroa (D-Fremont) (Office of the Governor release, 9/29). Effective Jan. 1, 2006, the law will require "dangerous" drug manufacturers and wholesalers to be licensed to receive the drugs and track excessive dangerous drug purchases by pharmacies that primarily dispense the medications to patients at long-term care facilities. In addition, the law will prohibit wholesalers and pharmacies from acquiring, selling, trading or transferring drugs after Jan. 1, 2007, without a "pedigree" showing where the drugs were manufactured and who has owned and stored them since then (Bill text, 8/26).
SB 1765, by Sen. Byron Sher (D-San Jose) (Office of the Governor release, 9/30). The law will require pharmaceutical companies to update and adhere to a Comprehensive Compliance Program that includes policies on interacting with health care professionals and limits on gifts and incentives (Bill text, 10/1).
SB 1782, by Sen. Sam Aanestad (R-Nevada City) (Office of the Governor release, 9/29). The law requires the California District Attorneys Association to collaborate with other interested parties by Jan. 1, 2006, to develop protocols for investigations into physicians' painkiller prescription practices (Bill text, 8/17).
- AB 2682, by Assembly member Gloria Negrete McLeod (D-Montclair) (Office of the Governor release, 9/29). The law -- which will take effect Jan. 1, 2006 -- will require any out-of-state drug manufacturers or wholesalers to obtain a "nonresident wholesaler license" from the California State Board of Pharmacy rather than the current "out-of-state dangerous drugs and devices distributor's license." The new license will require wholesalers to submit a surety bond of $100,000 for each business they own or operate that sends drugs to the state. However, the law will take effect only if SB 1307 is implemented by Jan. 1, 2005 (Bill text, 8/27).
AB 1960, by Assembly member Fran Pavley (D-Woodland Hills) (Office of the Governor release, 9/29). The bill would have required pharmacy benefit managers that work with state health programs to provide legislators with information on the discounts and rebates that they receive from drug companies for bulk purchases. Such information currently is confidential (California Healthline, 9/8).
- SB 1563, by Sen. Martha Escutia (D-Norwalk) (Office of the Governor release, 9/30). The bill would have amended the Pharmacy Law by requiring drug makers to sell certain prescription drugs and medical devices for no more than 105% of the discounted prices specified under federal law to specific types of clinics. In addition, the bill would have required manufacturers to disclose their price lists to clinics upon request (Bill text, 8/28).
Schwarzenegger signed AB 2445, by Assembly member Joe Canciamilla (D-Martinez) (Office of the Governor release, 9/29). Under the law, the office of the secretary of state will issue Advance Health Care Directive Registry identification cards to adults who seek to file their health care directives in the registry. Registrants must pay a fee to cover the costs of establishing and maintaining the registry. In addition, certain hospitals will have to check the registry for advance health care directives when treating patients (Bill text, 8/26).
Schwarzenegger vetoed the following bills:
AB 1324, by Assembly member Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento) (Office of the Governor release, 9/30). In the event that state or local firefighters, law enforcement officers or patrol members contract a blood-borne infectious disease while on duty and spread the disease to their dependents, the bill would have allowed their dependents to receive workers' compensation for all medically necessary health services for the duration of the disease. However, if they accepted the workers' compensation, dependents would have been prohibited from filing civil actions against the employer (Bill text, 8/24).
AB 1821, by Assembly member Rebecca Cohn (D-Campbell) (Office of the Governor release, 9/30). The bill would have established a state nursing contract program under the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development to help increase the state's supply of nurses (Bill text, 8/24).
AB 2285, by Assembly member Judy Chu (D-Monterey Park) (Office of the Governor release, 9/30). The bill would have prohibited health care providers from asking Medi-Cal beneficiaries to pay them more than patients' monthly share of costs under the program (Bill text, 8/26).
- SB 1525, by Speier (Office of the Governor release, 9/30). The bill would have required the Office of Family Planning's Family Planning, Access, Care and Treatment Waiver Program to administer a program that provides breast and cervical cancer screening services to low-income individuals (Bill text, 10/1).
The governor signed the following bills:
SB 1590, by Sen. Joe Dunn (D-Garden Grove). The law will allow some government agencies to deny Public Record Act requests for information on residents who work in reproductive health facilities (AP/San Francisco Chronicle, 10/1).
- SB 1633, by Figueroa (Office of the Governor release, 9/29). Under the law, businesses that want to obtain medical information from patients for direct marketing purposes will have to receive patients' consent. In addition, they will be subject to certain disclosure measures. The bill exempts businesses that are already subject to the state's Confidentiality of Medical Information Act, certain telephone corporations, and insurance institutions, agents and support organizations (Bill text, 8/23).