SENATE, No. 1662

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

219th LEGISLATURE

INTRODUCED FEBRUARY 13, 2020

 


 

Sponsored by:

Senator† LINDA R. GREENSTEIN

District 14 (Mercer and Middlesex)

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

†††† Establishes Task Force on Institutional Discrimination in Health Care.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

†††† As introduced.

††


An Act establishing the Task Force on Institutional Discrimination in Health Care.

 

†††† Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

†††† 1.††† a.† There is established in the Department of Health the Task Force on Institutional Discrimination in Health Care. †The purpose of the task force shall be to study and evaluate reasons for unequal health care outcomes among patients of different races and socioeconomic classes.

†††† b.††† The task force shall be comprised of 19 members as follows:

†††† (1)†† the Commissioner of Health, or the commissionerís designee, who shall serve ex officio;

†††† (2)†† the Attorney General, or the Attorney Generalís designee;

†††† (3)†† a representative from the Office of Population Health in the Department of Health, or the representativeís designee;

†††† (4)†† a representative from the Health Systems Branch of the Department of Health, or the representativeís designee;

†††† (5)†† the Director of the Division on Civil Rights in the Department of Law and Public Safety, or the directorís designee;

†††† (6)†† 10 members appointed by the Governor, who shall include: one member from each of the following entities: the State Board of Medical Examiners; the New Jersey Board of Nursing; the New Jersey State Board of Dentistry; the New Jersey State Board of Optometrists; the State Board of Chiropractic Examiners; the State Board of Physical Therapy Examiners; the Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology Advisory Committee in the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety; Families USA; the New Jersey Hospital Association; and the Office of Emergency Medical Services in the Department of Health;

†††† (7)†† one member appointed by the Governor upon the recommendation of the President of the Senate and one member appointed by the Governor upon the recommendation of the Minority Leader of the Senate, both of whom shall be members of the public with demonstrated expertise in issues relating to the work of the task force; and

†††† (8)†† one member appointed by the Governor upon the recommendation of the Speaker of the General Assembly and one member appointed by the Governor upon the recommendation of the Minority Leader of the General Assembly, both of whom shall be members of the public with demonstrated expertise in issues relating to the work of the task force.

†††† c.†††† Appointments to the task force shall be made within 30 days after the effective date of this act.† Vacancies in the membership of the task force shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointments were made.† Members of the task force shall serve without compensation, but shall be reimbursed for necessary expenditures incurred in the performance of their duties as members of the task force within the limits of funds appropriated or otherwise made available to the task force for its purposes.

 

†††† 2.††† The task force shall organize as soon as practicable, but no later than 30 days following the appointment of its members. †The task force shall choose a chairperson from among its members and shall appoint a secretary who need not be a member of the task force. †The presence of 10 members of the task force shall constitute a quorum.† The task force may conduct business without a quorum, but may only vote on recommendations when a quorum is present.

 

†††† 3.††† The Department of Health shall provide stenographic, clerical, and other administrative assistants and professional staff as the task force requires for its purposes.† The task force shall be entitled to call to its assistance and avail itself of the services of the employees of any State, county, or municipal department, board, bureau, commission, or agency as it may require and as may be available for its purposes.

 

†††† 4.††† The task force shall study and evaluate aspects of the institution of health care that may contribute to unequal health outcomes for patients of different races and socioeconomic classes. The task force shall:

†††† a.†††† review existing research, studies, and data concerning unequal health outcomes for patients of different races and socioeconomic classes; and

†††† b.††† identify specific policies for diminishing unequal health outcomes for patients of different races and socioeconomic classes, including, but not limited to, institutional analyses of hospitals and other facilities and training on racism in the medical profession.

 

†††† 5.††† a.† The task force shall issue a report to the Governor, and to the Legislature pursuant to section 2 of P.L.1991, c.164 (C.52:14-19.1), no later than six months after the task force organizes. †The report shall contain the task forceís findings and recommendations.

†††† b.††† The task force shall expire 30 days after the issuance of its report.

 

†††† 6.††† This act shall take effect immediately.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

†††† This bill establishes the Task Force on Institutional Discrimination in Health Care (task force).

†††† Under the bill, the task force is to study and evaluate aspects of the institution of health care that may contribute to unequal health outcomes for patients of different races and socioeconomic classes. The task force is to: (1) review existing research, studies, and data concerning unequal health outcomes for patients of different races and socioeconomic classes; and (2) identify specific policies for diminishing unequal health outcomes for patients of different races and socioeconomic classes, including, but not limited to, institutional analyses of hospitals and other facilities and training on racism in the medical profession.