Staff Reports

EDITOR’S NOTE: The legislature did not meet last week although the Senate met Saturday to discuss back-to-school bills.

Rather than votes, this Roll Call Report describes some topical health policy bills of interest.

House Bill 5878: Require community colleges become coronavirus wards if needed

Introduced by Rep. Brenda Carter (D), to require community colleges to community college to make its dormitories, arenas, parking lots, and other facilities available for use as coronavirus epidemic medical “surge” facilities. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

Senate Bill 972: Ban transferring coronavirus patient to adult foster care facility

Introduced by Sen. Peter Lucido (R), to prohibit admitting a patient who tested positive with coronavirus to an adult foster care facility from another facility.

Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

Senate Bill 920: Revise pharmacist rules for epidemic

Introduced by Sen. Peter MacGregor (R), to revise some of the legal restrictions on what pharmacists may and may not do in their practices until June 1, 2020. Among other things the bill would allow dispensing an emergency refill of up to a 60-day supply of a prescription drug other than a controlled substance; operating temporarily at a remote location; dispensing drugs as needed to treat an individual with COVID-19; substituting a therapeutically equivalent drug for a drug with a critical shortage; overseeing a pharmacy technician and other staff remotely; and allowing an out-of-state pharmacy, manufacturer, or distributor licensed in another state to do business in Michigan. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

House Bill 5746: Stockpile for the next epidemic

Introduced by Rep. John Cherry (D), to appropriate money the State Police would use to maintain a “a stockpile of materials and supplies that will be necessary to respond to a disaster or emergency.”

The amount is not specified and would be negotiated if the proposal advances. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

House Bill 5751: Liability waivers for medical professionals in epidemic

Introduced by Rep. Jason Sheppard (R), to extend to health care professionals and health care facilities liability exemptions for actions taken through the end of the declared coronavirus epidemic emergency. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

House Bill 5873: Prescription refills during epidemic

Introduced by Rep. Abdullah Hammoud (D), to mandate that health insurers must reimburse emergency refills of medications, lift barriers to getting drugs from an “out of network” provider and lift similar coverage restrictions during a declared state of emergency. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

Senate Concurrent Resolution 25: Demand Governor compile and release coronavirus epidemic statistics:

Introduced by Sen. Tom Barrett (R), to demand that the governor compile and make available detailed county- and state-level data from the start of 2020 on overall hospital and intensive care bed occupancy rates; daily beds occupied by verified COVID-19 patients; daily emergency room visits; verified COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths related to nursing homes and to patients with pre-existing or underlying health conditions, segregated by age, gender, and race; the daily number of ventilators and personal protective equipment available; and the number of medical professionals who have been furloughed or had their hours cut. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

SOURCE: MichiganVotes.org, a free, non-partisan website created by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, providing concise, non-partisan, plain-English descriptions of every bill and vote in the Michigan House and Senate. Please visit MichiganVotes.org.