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Sponsors: Senators McConnell, Hayes, Ford, Knotts, Ritchie, Campsen, Richardson, McGill, Elliott, Cleary, Leatherman, Fair, Alexander and Lourie
Document Path: l:\council\bills\nbd\11088ac07.doc
Introduced in the Senate on January 9, 2007
Currently residing in the Senate Committee on Judiciary
Summary: Child Abuse and Neglect Medical Response Act
HISTORY OF LEGISLATIVE ACTIONS
Date Body Action Description with journal page number ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 12/13/2006 Senate Prefiled 12/13/2006 Senate Referred to Committee on Judiciary 1/9/2007 Senate Introduced and read first time SJ-93 1/9/2007 Senate Referred to Committee on Judiciary SJ-93 1/17/2007 Senate Referred to Subcommittee: Ritchie (ch), Rankin, Lourie, Scott
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VERSIONS OF THIS BILL
TO AMEND THE CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, BY ADDING ARTICLE 34 TO CHAPTER 7, TITLE 20 SO AS TO ENACT THE "SOUTH CAROLINA CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT MEDICAL RESPONSE SYSTEM ACT", SO AS TO CREATE THE SOUTH CAROLINA CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT MEDICAL RESPONSE SYSTEM, A PROGRAM TO PROVIDE COORDINATION AND MEDICAL RESOURCES STATEWIDE TO AGENCIES AND ENTITIES THAT RESPOND TO VICTIMS OF CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT, TO PROVIDE THAT THIS PROGRAM MUST BE ADMINISTERED BY THE UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH CAROLINA, SCHOOL OF MEDICINE, DEPARTMENT OF PEDIATRICS, TO PROVIDE FOR THE DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE PROGRAM, AND TO ESTABLISH THE SOUTH CAROLINA CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT SERVICES FUND TO BE ADMINISTERED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES FOR THE OPERATION OF THE CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT MEDICAL RESPONSE SYSTEM; AND TO AMEND SECTION 20-7-495, RELATING TO CHILDREN'S ADVOCACY CENTERS, SO AS TO REQUIRE THESE CENTERS TO ENTER INTO MEMORANDA OF AGREEMENT WITH THE SOUTH CAROLINA CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT MEDICAL RESPONSE SYSTEM TO PROVIDE FORENSIC MEDICAL SERVICES IN ACCORDANCE WITH GUIDELINES ESTABLISHED BY THE SYSTEM AND TO REQUIRE CHILDREN'S ADVOCACY CENTERS AND CHILDREN'S HOSPITALS TO RELEASE THE MEDICAL RECORDS OF CHILDREN SERVED FOR CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT TO THE SYSTEM FOR RESEARCH, QUALITY ASSURANCE, AND OTHER SPECIFIED PURPOSES.
Whereas, the South Carolina General Assembly has determined that the State is in need of a coordinated program to respond to the needs of victims of child abuse and neglect. The purpose of this program would be to provide coordination and medical information resources to those entities responding to cases of child abuse and neglect in order to assist in the process of obtaining forensic medical information and to perform such other activities as are consistent with this Act. Now, therefore,
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. Chapter 7, Title 20 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:
Section 20-7-9800. This article may be cited as the "South Carolina Child Abuse and Neglect Medical Response System Act."
Section 20-7-9810. There is created the South Carolina Child Abuse and Neglect Medical Response System to be administered by the University of South Carolina, School of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics.
Section 20-7-9820. For purposes of this article:
(1) 'Child' means a person under the age of eighteen.
(2) 'Child abuse or neglect' has the same meaning as provided for in Section 20-7-490.
(3) 'Children's advocacy centers' has the same meaning as provided for in Section 20-7-495.
(4) 'Fund' means the South Carolina Child Abuse and Neglect Services Fund created pursuant to Section 20-7-9850.
(5) 'Program' means the South Carolina Child Abuse and Neglect Medical Response System created pursuant to this article.
Section 20-7-9830. (A) The program shall coordinate and provide medical information resources to state agencies and children's advocacy centers in support of the following services to children who are suspected victims of child abuse or neglect:
(1) forensic medical evaluations & diagnosis;
(2) follow-up forensic medical services;
(3) medical consultations;
(4) participation in multi-disciplinary case management; and
(5) depositions and expert courtroom testimony as requested.
(B) The program shall provide resources to state agencies, medical providers, and children's advocacy centers for the purpose of:
(1) improving the quality and consistency of care provided through the development and management of:
(a) clinical guidelines and protocols for the medical assessment of child abuse and neglect based on currently published peer-reviewed medical literature;
(b) medical provider qualifications requirements;
(c) medical peer review processes;
(d) quality improvement and quality assurance programs; and
(e) online resources for providers;
(2) increasing the number of qualified providers in the State through the development and management of medical provider education programs for physicians and other health care providers which may include, but are not limited to:
(a) establishing a fellowship program for physicians to meet the training requirements for the pediatric specialty of Child Abuse Pediatrics as defined by the Accreditation Council in Graduate Medical Education;
(b) establishing scholarships for physicians and mid-level providers to attend child abuse training;
(c) providing continuing medical education programs; and
(d) providing mid-level provider programs.
(C) The program shall collect and manage data from child abuse medical service providers, children's advocacy centers, and children's hospitals for the purposes of establishing quality assurance programs, medical education programs, research, and public policy guidance.
(D) The program is authorized to make payments from available funds to health care providers and facilities meeting the medical provider qualifications to be developed pursuant to subsection (B)(1)(b) and who have rendered care and treatment in accordance with the clinical guidelines to be developed pursuant to subsection (B)(1)(a) to any child who is a suspected victim of child abuse or neglect.
Section 20-7-9840. The program shall submit an annual report to the General Assembly and to the Governor regarding the program's services and accomplishments.
Section 20-7-9850. (A) There is established the South Carolina Child Abuse and Neglect Services Fund in the State Treasurer's Office, separate and distinct from the general fund. Monies must be appropriated to the fund in the annual appropriations act, and this fund must be administered by the Department of Health and Human Services for the operation of the Children's Advocacy Medical Response System in accordance with this article. Interest earned on monies in the fund must be retained by the fund, and all unexpended funds must be carried forward to be used for the same purposes provided for in this article."
SECTION 2. Section 20-7-495 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 20-7-495. (A) 'Children's advocacy centers' mean centers which must coordinate a multi-agency response to child maltreatment and assist in the investigation and assessment of child abuse. These centers must provide:
(1) a neutral, child-friendly facility for forensic interviews;
(2) the coordination of services for children reported to have been abused;
(3) services including, but not limited to, forensic interviews, forensic medical examinations, and case reviews by multidisciplinary teams to best determine whether maltreatment has occurred; and
(4) therapeutic counseling services, support services for the child and nonoffending family members, court advocacy, consultation, and training for professionals who work in the area of child abuse and neglect, to reduce negative impact to the child and break the cycle of abuse.
(B)(1) Children's advocacy centers must establish memoranda of agreement with governmental entities charged with the investigation and prosecution of child abuse. Fully operational centers must function in a manner consistent with standards of the National Children's Alliance, and all centers must strive to achieve full membership in the National Children's Alliance.
(2) Children's advocacy centers must establish memoranda of agreement with the South Carolina Child Abuse and Neglect Medical Response System (SCCANMRS), created pursuant to Article 34, and must agree to:
(a) provide forensic medical services in accordance with the clinical guidelines established by SCCANMRS;
(b) contract with medical providers meeting professional qualification standards established by SCCANMRS;
(c) work closely with the children's hospitals in the State and other community hospitals to coordinate services for children evaluated at the hospital for injuries or medical conditions caused by child abuse or neglect.
(d) work closely with SCCANMRS to develop and participate in quality assurance programs.
23) Children's advocacy centers must establish written policies and procedures for standards of care including, but not limited to, the timely intervention of services between initial contact with the child and the event which led to the child's being referred to the center. Children's advocacy centers must make available these written policies and procedures to all professionals who provide services relating to the investigation, treatment, and prosecution of child abuse and neglect within the geographical vicinity of the center.
(4) Children's advocacy centers and children's hospital must release medical records of children who are served by these centers and hospitals for child abuse and neglect to SCCANMRS for the purposes of research, quality improvement processes, quality assurance audits, monitoring incidence, guiding public policy, and accountability reporting to the General Assembly.
3 5) Children's advocacy center records must be released to the Department of Social Services for purposes of investigation, assessment of allegations of child abuse or neglect, and provision of treatment services to the children or their families. The records must be released to law enforcement agencies and circuit solicitors or their agents who are:
(a) investigating or prosecuting known or suspected abuse or neglect of a child;
(b) investigating or prosecuting the death of a child;
(c) investigating or prosecuting any crime against a child; or
(d) attempting to locate a missing child.
This provision does not preclude or override the release of information based upon a subpoena or court order, unless otherwise prohibited by law.
(C) The South Carolina Network of Children's Advocacy Centers and the South Carolina Chapter of the National Children's Alliance must coordinate and facilitate the exchange of information among statewide centers and provide technical assistance to communities in the establishment, growth, and certification of local centers. The network must also educate the public and legislature regarding the needs of abused children and provide or coordinate multidisciplinary training opportunities which support the comprehensive response to suspected child maltreatment.
(D) Nothing in this section requires the exclusive use of a children's advocacy center."
SECTION 3. This act takes effect July 1, 2007.
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