Flurry of Bills Before Legislative Deadline

The deadline is Friday for introducing bills in the California Legislature.
Several health-related bills have gotten in under the wire in Sacramento, including:

  • A bill introduced Tuesday by Sen. Tony Thurmond (D-San Diego) would ban tobacco chewing and all forms of tobacco including e-cigarettes from professional baseball venues in California. (Bill text and bill number not yet available);
  • AB 463 by Assembly member David Chiu (D-San Francisco) is designed to make drug pricing more transparent;
  • SB 323 by Sen. Ed Hernandez (D-West Covina) would allow nurse practitioners to establish independent practices and prescribe medication without a physician’s supervision;
  • SB 192 by Sen. Carol Liu (D- La Cañada Flintridge) would require adult bike riders to wear helmets, the first state mandate in the country for helmets for those 18 and older;
  • AB 403 by Assembly member Mark Stone (D-Monterey Bay) hopes to make foster care group homes temporary, rather than permanent; and
  • SB 287 by Sen. Ben Hueso (D-San Diego) would require electronic defibrillators in most new buildings in California with occupancies greater than 200 people.

In addition, there are a number of high-profile, health-related bills introduced over the past month that will vie for attention this session:

  • Restoring the 10% Medi-Cal provider rate reimbursement  — AB 366 by Assembly member Rob Bonta (D-Oakland);
  • Eliminating the personal-belief exemption for childhood vaccinations — SB 277 by Sen. Richard Pan (D-Sacramento);
  • Posting a health-risk warning label on sodas and energy drinks — SB 203 by Sen. Bill Monning (D-Carmel);
  • Making e-cigarettes follow existing state tobacco laws — SB 140 by Sen. Mark Leno (D-San Francisco);
  • Establishing health care for the undocumented — SB 4 by Sen. Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens);
  • Raising the legal age for smoking to 21 — SB 151 by Hernandez;
  • Setting up right-to-die legislation similar to Oregon’s — SB 128 by Sen. Lois Wolk (D-Davis) and Monning;
  • Requiring health insurers to improve and update their provider network directories — SB 137 by Hernandez; and
  • Fining hospitals that refuse to treat intoxicated patients in their emergency departments, by “dumping” them and having them arrested — SB 145 by Pan.