Current Status Introducing Body:
HouseBill Number: 4941Primary Sponsor: RobinsonType of Legislation: GBSubject: Foster family care providers, immunity from liabilityResiding Body: HouseComputer Document Number: CYY/15795AC.94Introduced Date: 19940317Date of Last Amendment: 19940602Last History Body: SenateLast History Date: 19940602Last History Type: Amended, read third time, returned to House with amendmentsScope of Legislation: StatewideAll Sponsors: Robinson Stone Marchbanks Govan Littlejohn Mattos Corning Allison Sturkie J. Wilder Simrill Law Wofford Wright Sharpe Harrell Huff Wells Haskins Riser Jaskwhich Moody-LawrenceType of Legislation: General Bill
Bill Body Date Action Description CMN Leg Involved ____ ______ ____________ ______________________________ ___ ____________ 4941 Senate 19940602 Amended, read third time, returned to House with amendments 4941 Senate 19940601 Amended, read second time, ordered to third reading with notice of general amendments 4941 Senate 19940526 Recalled from Committee, 08 placed on Calendar 4941 Senate 19940509 Introduced, read first time, 08 referred to Committee 4941 House 19940506 Read third time, sent to Senate 4941 House 19940505 Amended, read second time, unanimous consent for third reading on next Legislative day 4941 House 19940421 Committee Report: Favorable 25 with amendment 4941 House 19940317 Introduced, read first time, 25 referred to CommitteeView additional legislative information at the LPITS web site.
AS PASSED BY SENATE
June 2, 1994
Introduced by REPS. Robinson, Stone, Marchbanks, Govan, Littlejohn, Mattos, Corning, Allison, Sturkie, J. Wilder, Simrill, Law, Wofford, Wright, Sharpe, Harrell, Huff, Wells, Haskins, Riser, Jaskwhich and Moody-Lawrence
S. Printed 6/2/94--S.
Read the first time May 9, 1994.
TO AMEND THE CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, BY ADDING SECTION 20-7-1644 SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT LICENSED FOSTER FAMILY CARE PROVIDERS ARE NOT LIABLE FOR LOSSES RESULTING FROM ACTS MADE IN GOOD FAITH WITHIN THE SCOPE OF THEIR OBLIGATIONS AS FOSTER PARENTS; BY ADDING SECTION 43-1-90 SO AS TO REQUIRE THE DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL SERVICES TO DEVELOP AN INTERNAL REVIEW SYSTEM FOR CASES IN WHICH A CHILD KNOWN TO THE DEPARTMENT HAS DIED; BY ADDING SECTION 62-2-805 SO AS TO PROVIDE CIRCUMSTANCES UNDER WHICH A PARENT MAY NOT INHERIT FROM A DECEASED CHILD; TO AMEND SECTION 15-78-60, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO GOVERNMENTAL IMMUNITY UNDER THE TORT CLAIMS ACT, SO AS TO PROVIDE IMMUNITY FOR LOSSES RESULTING FROM ACTS OR OMISSIONS WITHIN THE SCOPE OF DUTY OF THOSE PERSONS PERFORMING CHILD PROTECTIVE OR CHILD WELFARE RELATED FUNCTIONS; TO AMEND SECTION 15-78-170, RELATING TO ACTIONS OR CLAIMS FOR DEATH OF A PERSON AND THE DIVISION OF RECOVERY SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT ANYONE PRECLUDED FROM INHERITING FROM THE ESTATE OF A DECEASED CHILD MAY NOT ACT AS PERSONAL REPRESENTATIVE NOR BENEFIT FROM ANY PROCEEDING BASED ON INJURY TO OR DEATH OF THE CHILD; AND TO AMEND SECTION 62-3-203, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO PERSONS NOT QUALIFIED TO SERVE AS A PERSONAL REPRESENTATIVE SO AS TO INCLUDE PARENTS PRECLUDED FROM INHERITING FROM THE ESTATE OF THEIR DECEASED CHILD IN THE LEGAL CUSTODY OF THE STATE.
Amend Title To Conform
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. The 1976 Code is amended by adding:
"Section 20-7-1644. Persons licensed by the South Carolina Department of Social Services to provide foster family care are not liable for losses resulting from acts or omissions within the scope of their obligations as foster parents, when these acts or omissions are made in good faith and do not constitute gross negligence, recklessness, wilfulness, or wantonness. For this immunity to attach the license must be valid at the time of the act or omission. This immunity applies only to foster care provided to children in the custody of a state agency."
SECTION 2. The following sections may be cited as the "South Carolina Drug Impaired Infants Act".
SECTION 3. It is the policy of this State that:
(1) Prevention of harm to the fetus is the primary objective of this State and its subdivisions in formulating programs and policies to address the use of alcohol or other drugs during pregnancy.
(2) Programs and policies to address the use of alcohol or other drugs during pregnancy should concentrate on measures that improve the individual's ability to act responsibly. Punitive or coercive measures should be used only as a last resort.
(3) Prenatal harm can be caused by exposure to various drugs, including alcohol, and is often a result of multiple exposures as well as other influences, such as poor maternal health, malnutrition, and lack of prenatal care. The most effective way to prevent this harm is to improve the overall well-being and the self-esteem of women. Efforts to prevent prenatal harm should utilize innovative strategies aimed at the broad range of factors contributing to harm associated with prenatal substance abuse. New models of service delivery should be developed to increase the utilization of available services, using outreach and community-based services as means for identifying and serving the target population.
(4) The use of alcohol and other drugs by women places them at risk for the development of numerous physical and psychological problems. Women whose physical or psychological health is compromised have diminished capacity to care for themselves and their families as well as to participate meaningfully in the community in which they live. Alcohol and other drug abuse isolates women from the institutions of society which support the building and maintenance of self-respect and healthy relationships. Progress and policies of the State and its subdivisions should seek to promote health-enhancing behaviors in women and to develop treatment programs which improve the capacity of women to function fully within their communities.
(5) Prevention, treatment, rehabilitation, education, and counseling support services for alcohol and other drug abuse, which reflect the unique needs of pregnant women, should be accessible and available to these women. Public and private funds and resources should be identified to implement model intervention programs. Providers of alcohol or drug treatment services must not discriminate against pregnant women or women of childbearing age in providing these services. Pregnant women should be given priority access to treatment services for alcohol or drug dependency.
(6) Adequate prenatal care, through the public and private sectors, should be available and accessible for every pregnant woman. In order to avoid deterring pregnant substance abusers from obtaining prenatal care at the earliest possible time, the privacy of the physician-patient relationship should be protected.
(7) All men and women of childbearing age should be educated about the physical, emotional, and medical effects of alcohol and other drug use during pregnancy. Appropriate educational materials and programs should be developed for use in schools. Educational efforts should emphasize prevention.
(8) All agencies with functions related to use of alcohol or other drugs by pregnant women, including health, social services, corrections, and law enforcement agencies, shall develop plans and interagency policies for coordination of services and resources. These plans and policies should provide for a continuum of services to prevent harm caused by prenatal exposure to alcohol or other drugs. They should include innovative strategies that take into consideration social conditions likely to affect the success of prevention or treatment initiatives, including housing, child care, transportation, and job training specific to women's needs.
(9) Health, social services, and educational agencies shall develop plans and interagency policies for coordination of services and resources to meet the special needs of children who have been harmed by prenatal exposure to alcohol and other drugs.
(10) Statutes, including statutes defining the authority of state or local agencies or providers of services, must be broadly construed to accomplish the policies set forth in this act.
(11) The policies provided for in this act shall be implemented through the cooperative efforts of state, county, and municipal legislative, judicial, and executive branches, as well as other public and private resources. Where resources are limited, services must be targeted to have the greatest impact on preventing harm associated with prenatal exposure to alcohol or other drugs.
SECTION 4. Title 44 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:
Section 44-54-10. A physician licensed in South Carolina who provides obstetrical or gynecological care to a patient who is pregnant shall counsel the patient on the perinatal effects of smoking cigarettes, the use of alcohol, and the use of a controlled substance as defined in Section 44-53-110, as well as other risk factors appearing to be present in the patient's life. A physician may fulfill this obligation by causing a nurse, social worker, or other allied health professional to provide the required counseling. A statement evidencing that this counseling has been provided and signed by the patient or by the person giving this counseling must be maintained as part of that patient's medical records.
Section 44-54-20. The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control, in cooperation with the South Carolina Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse, shall develop and provide educational programs and materials to physicians who provide obstetrical or gynecological care, to other health care providers who provide services for pregnant women, to hospitals, and to other appropriate persons and entities. This information must include, but is not limited to:
(1) the effects of cigarettes, alcohol, and controlled substances on pregnancy and fetal outcome;
(2) how other aspects of a woman's life, such as poor nutrition and domestic violence, interact with substance abuse to affect fetal outcome;
(3) what services are available for addicted or substance-abusing women and their families;
(4) the harm done to fetuses from drug use by the mother; and
(5) the law relating to drug use during pregnancy, including the provisions of this chapter.
Section 44-54-30. The South Carolina Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse shall establish and maintain a toll-free information line to provide information on resources for substance abuse and to assist with referral for substance-abusing pregnant women.
Section 44-54-40. A pregnant woman referred for substance abuse treatment must receive first priority for use of available treatment. All records and reports regarding the pregnant woman are confidential. The South Carolina Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse shall ensure that family-oriented substance abuse treatment is available, as appropriations allow. Substance abuse treatment facilities that receive public funds may not refuse to treat a woman solely because she is pregnant.
SECTION 5. Section 20-7-510 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:
"(D) A person is not required to report based on positive results of drug or alcohol testing performed on a newborn unless the test results combine with one or more other factors, such as the infant's home or family situation or condition, to give the reporter reason to believe that a child's physical or mental health or welfare may be affected adversely by abuse or neglect while in the care of a parent, legal guardian, or custodian."
SECTION 6. Section 44-7-260 of the 1976 Code, as last amended by Act 501 of 1990, is further amended by adding:
"(F) No facility or service that provides diagnostic, treatment, or rehabilitative services related to the abuse of alcohol or other drugs may refuse to provide these services to a woman solely because the woman is pregnant. Pregnant women must be given priority access to these services. Diagnostic, treatment, or rehabilitative services must be provided in accordance with accepted professional standards applicable to the treatment of abuse of alcohol or other drugs in pregnant women. All treatment providers must ensure that family-oriented substance abuse treatment is available, as resources may allow."
SECTION 7. Section 44-49-40(c) of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:
"(11) Coordinate these matters relating to prenatal substance abuse:
(a) study of issues related to prenatal substance abuse;
(b) development of prevention and treatment strategies;
(c) education of policymakers and other relevant professionals;
(d) identification of grants and other private funding sources and the coordination of efforts to obtain these funds; and
(e) provision of interagency communications and actions relating to the use of alcohol and other drugs during pregnancy."
SECTION 8. Section 44-53-140 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 44-53-140. (A) Whenever When a holder of the privilege shall seek seeks counselling, treatment, or therapy for any a drug problem from a confidant, no statement made by such the holder and no observation or conclusion derived from such the confidant shall be is admissible against such the holder in any proceeding. The results of any an examination to determine the existence of illegal or prohibited drugs in a holder's body shall are not be admissible in any proceeding against such the holder. The privilege belongs to the holder and if he the holder waives the right to claim the privilege the communication between the holder of the privilege and the confidant shall be is admissible in evidence in any proceeding. There is no privilege if the services of a confidant are sought to enable the holder of the privilege to commit or plan to commit a crime or a tort.
(B) When a person seeks prenatal care from a licensed health care provider, no statement made by the person and no observation or conclusion of the health care provider is admissible against the person in any proceeding. The results of an examination to determine the existence of alcohol or other drugs in the person's body or in the body of the newborn child of the person are not admissible in any proceeding against the person. However, the provider may release that information necessary to bring about the commitment of the person for alcohol or drug treatment pursuant to Section 44-52-110, where the release is consistent with professional standards of care. The provider also may release information necessary to judicial proceedings that are initiated by the Department of Social Services following a report under Section 20-7-510. The privilege belongs to the person and may be waived by the person."
SECTION 9. Section 59-32-20 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding a new paragraph at the end of the section to read:
"All school districts shall develop and include in their drug and alcohol education programs in grades one through twelve, age appropriate drug education curricula concerning the physiological effects and problems before and after birth caused by the use of cigarettes, alcohol, and controlled substances."
SECTION 10. Section 59-32-30(A) of the 1976 Code is amended by adding at the end:
"(7) Where appropriate to the students' age group, a program of instruction in reproductive health education or substance use or abuse must include instruction concerning the effects of the use and abuse of cigarettes, alcohol, and controlled substances on persons of reproductive age, pregnant women, and fetuses."
SECTION 11. The South Carolina Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse shall ensure that a staff position is designated to carry out the functions required by Section 44-49-40(c)(11) of the 1976 Code as added by Section 7 of this act.
SECTION 12. Chapter 13, Title 61 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:
"Section 61-13-890. (A) Every person engaged in the business of selling at retail beer, wine, or liquor may post in every location for which the person has obtained a license or permit a sign with the following words printed thereon:
(B) The sign required by this section must be no smaller than six inches high by twelve inches wide, with print no smaller than one-half inch bold print in clear, readable letters. The number for the South Carolina Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse's toll free information line may be handwritten on the line following `CALL'. The Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission shall prescribe by regulation the location of the sign in a conspicuous place on the seller's premises."
SECTION 13. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.