Legislature(2011 - 2012)CAPITOL 106
02/28/2012 03:00 PM HEALTH & SOCIAL SERVICES
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|Confirmation Hearing(s): State Medical Board|
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HB 310-STATE IMMUNIZATION PROGRAM 3:42:28 PM CHAIR KELLER announced that the next order of business would be HOUSE BILL NO. 310, "An Act temporarily reinstating the child and adult immunization program in the Department of Health and Social Services; and providing for an effective date." REPRESENTATIVE HERRON moved to adopt Amendment A.1, labeled 27- LS1273\A.1, Luckhaupt/Mischel, 2/28/12, which read: Page 1, line 12: Delete "recommended" Page 1, line 13: Delete "recommended" Page 3, line 1: Delete "recommended" Page 3, lines 3 - 8: Delete all material and insert: "(f) The vaccines included in the program (1) for a child under 19 years of age are all vaccines required for school attendance under AS 14.30.125 and influenza and pneumococcal vaccines;" Page 3, line 13, following "standards": Insert ", the recommendations of the federal advisory committee on immunization practices," CHAIR KELLER objected for discussion. REPRESENTATIVE HERRON explained that proposed Amendment A.1 would delete "recommended" as it was a hard word to define. Referring to page 3, lines 3-8, he explained that all the vaccines approved by the commissioner [Department of Health and Social Services] for school attendance would now be included. He listed the required immunizations for school attendance to be diphtheria, tetanus, polio, pertussis, measles, mumps, Hepatitis A and B, rubella, and varicella. 3:44:48 PM CHAIR KELLER asked if the Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS) had reviewed the proposed amendment and if it had any impact to the fiscal note. He clarified that public testimony was still open from the previous meeting [February 14, 2012]. 3:45:18 PM JILL LEWIS, Deputy Director-Juneau, Central Office, Division of Public Health, Department of Health and Social Services, acknowledged that DHSS had reviewed the proposed amendment, and had not found there to be any impact on the fiscal note. 3:45:55 PM WARD HURLBURT, MD, Chief Medical Officer/Director, Division of Public Health, Central Office, Department of Health and Social Services, expressed his agreement with Ms. Lewis, and stated that the proposed amendment clarified the use of the most cost effective vaccines, and offered flexibility to DHSS. 3:46:56 PM MARIE DARLIN, Coordinator, AARP Capital City Task Force, stated that AARP supported proposed HB 310. Speaking from the standpoint of the older citizens, she said that AARP recognized that providing free vaccines for adults was "a good effective public health measure" and a good preventative issue. She declared support for the immunization of children, as well. She pointed to the large number of AARP members, who, as grandparents, were raising grandchildren. 3:48:18 PM DENISE DANIELLO, Executive Director, Alaska Commission on Aging, Division of Senior and Disabilities Services, Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS), testified in support of proposed HB 310. She stated that prevention and vaccinations were good health measures for every one of every age, and were especially important for older people as immune systems weakened with age. These programs enhanced a person's health and independence. She reminded the committee that Alaska was the leader in the rate of senior population growth, and declared the importance for immunizations, vaccines, and healthy behaviors to maintain good health. She pointed out that many seniors, including those who had lived a subsistence life style, were uninsured or ineligible for Medicare, and would benefit from proposed HB 310. She asked that the committee consider the addition of an immunization for shingles. She described shingles as a painful rash that, if in contact with the eyes, could lead to blindness. She pointed out that the risk of shingles increased with age. She declared support for proposed HB 310. 3:51:54 PM REPRESENTATIVE KERTTULA asked if shingles fit into a nationally recognized public health standard, so that DHSS could add this to the list of vaccinations. 3:52:29 PM DR. HURLBURT said that proposed HB 310 would allow the flexibility to add a vaccination for shingles. He pointed out that it was an expensive vaccine, but that an efficient use of funding would allow the addition of vaccinations for rotavirus and shingles as the next cost effective vaccines. 3:53:26 PM CHAIR KELLER closed public testimony and asked the committee if there were any more questions on the proposed amendment. 3:53:55 PM CHAIR KELLER removed his objection to Amendment A.1. There being no further objection, Amendment A.1 was passed. 3:54:12 PM REPRESENTATIVE MILLER asked if it was necessary to add shingles to the language in proposed HB 310. CHAIR KELLER replied that he was satisfied that DHSS would support the inclusion of the shingles vaccination, and that it did not need to be mandated in the proposed bill. 3:54:49 PM REPRESENTATIVE DICK moved to report HB 310, as amended, out of committee with individual recommendations and the accompanying fiscal notes. There being no objection, CSHB 310(HSS) was reported from the House Health and Social Services Standing Committee.