Legislature(2005 - 2006)BUTROVICH 205

04/28/2006 01:30 PM HEALTH, EDUCATION & SOCIAL SERVICES


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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+= SB 281 SCHOOL DIST. ENROLLMENT SHARING/CORRESPON TELECONFERENCED
Scheduled But Not Heard
+= HB 442 HEALTH CARE DECISIONS TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHB 442(JUD) am Out of Committee
+= SB 287 POSTSECONDARY TUITION FOR FOSTER CHILDREN TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
= HB 393 INSURANCE FOR COLORECTAL CANCER SCREENING
Moved SCS CSHB 393(HES) Out of Committee
            CSHB 442(JUD) am - HEALTH CARE DECISIONS                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR   DYSON  announced   CSHB  442(JUD)   am  to   be  up   for                                                               
consideration.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
1:35:17 PM                                                                                                                    
JACQUELINE  TUPOU,  Staff   to  Representative  Bruce  Weyhrauch,                                                               
Alaska State  Legislature, presented  the sponsor  statement. She                                                               
said  that  this narrowly  crafted  cleanup  bill is  simply  for                                                               
liability relating  to people who  carry out Advance  Health Care                                                               
Directives, and that the sponsor does  not want to open the whole                                                               
issue again.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. TUPOU  explained that the  bill amends the legal  standard to                                                               
which  doctors are  held, from  "reasonable" to  "good-faith". It                                                               
also allows  doctors to  correct their  own mistakes  when people                                                               
have an Advance Health Care  Directive. For example, if a patient                                                               
with cancer  had a Do  Not Resuscitate (DNR) directive  but broke                                                               
his hip and  required surgery under anesthesia,  the doctor could                                                               
revive him if  necessary due to a problem  resulting from medical                                                               
error  during  that   procedure.  Furthermore,  doctors  honoring                                                               
Advance  Health Care  Directives would  not be  subject to  civil                                                               
liability if, for instance, relatives  disagreed with a decision.                                                               
Ms.  Tupou emphasized  the  importance of  having  the wishes  of                                                               
people who have  an Advance Health Care Directive  carried out by                                                               
their families and loved ones.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
1:37:57 PM                                                                                                                    
CHAIR DYSON  asked whether there  had been any opposition  to the                                                               
bill.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MS.  TUPOU  answered  that  there   was  minor  opposition  among                                                               
attorneys   about   providing   indemnity,   but   Representative                                                               
Weyhrauch, a former president of  the Alaska Bar Association, was                                                               
familiar with that, and decided that was the best policy.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR GREEN arrived at 1:38:22 PM.                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
1:38:28 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR OLSON asked whether the  medical community had offered an                                                               
opinion on the bill.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MS. TUPOU replied that physicians  brought this issue forward and                                                               
added that Eric Jenkins Esq.  was available via teleconference to                                                               
answer  questions for  the Alaska  State Medical  Association and                                                               
the "physicians and anesthesiologists groups."                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
1:39:09 PM                                                                                                                    
ERIC JENKINS,  Attorney-at-Law, Davis  Wright Tremaine  LLP, said                                                               
that he was representing  Providence Anchorage Anesthesia Medical                                                               
Group, and confirmed  that his association is very  much in favor                                                               
of this bill.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
SENATOR  OLSON  asked  why the  term  "attending  physician"  was                                                               
replaced by the term "physician".                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MS.  TUPOU  replied  that,  as   she  understands  it,  the  term                                                               
"attending physician" is passé,  since numerous doctors might see                                                               
a patient once  he is admitted to a hospital.  The sponsor wanted                                                               
to clarify  that any  physician attending  a patient  would honor                                                               
his Advance Health Care Directives.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
1:41:34 PM                                                                                                                    
SENATOR WILKEN  moved to report  CSHB 442(JUD) am  from committee                                                               
with  individual  recommendations  and no  fiscal  note.  Without                                                               
objection, CSHB 442(JUD) am was  reported from the Senate Health,                                                               
Education and Social Services Standing Committee.                                                                               

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