Substitute Senate Bill No. 963

Special Act No. 01-8

AN ACT REQUIRING COORDINATION OF SERVICES FOR CHILDREN WITH SPECIAL HEALTH CARE NEEDS.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

(a) As used in this section, "children with special health care needs" means children under the age of eighteen who: (1) Have one or more serious chronic medical conditions; (2) are children with disabilities, as defined in section 17a-219a of the general statutes; and (3) have ongoing significant health care services needs.

(b) The Commissioners of Mental Retardation, Social Services, Children and Families, Education, Mental Health and Addiction Services and Public Health, the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management and the Child Advocate shall develop a comprehensive plan for the coordinated expenditure of funds and for the coordinated delivery of services to children with special health care needs. The Office of Policy and Management shall be responsible for the coordination of the plan.

(c) The comprehensive plan for the coordinated expenditure of funds and for the coordinated delivery of services to children with special health care needs required by subsection (b) of this section shall give priority to the following goals: (1) The establishment and administration of an account that, to the greatest extent practicable without the loss of federal funds, will contain any funds appropriated by or available to the state for the delivery of services or resources to children with special health care needs or their families; (2) a lead agency responsible for the oversight and administration of a comprehensive plan for the coordinated expenditure of such funds and for the coordinated delivery of services to children with special health care needs; (3) a single point of entry to the system of state-funded or state-administered services or resources for children with special health care needs; (4) a system-of-care model in which service planning is directed by the needs and preferences of the child and the child's family and that places a greater emphasis on early identification, prevention and early intervention to prevent the escalation of special health care needs; (5) development of a comprehensive and flexible continuum of services with emphasis on home-based and community-based support services that permit care of the child to occur in the appropriate, least restrictive setting; (6) community-based care coordination and service delivery; and (7) identification of the need, if any, for additional appropriate, least restrictive residential placements for children with special health care needs and a plan for development of such residential placements, if needed.

(d) Not later than April 1, 2002, the Commissioners of Mental Retardation, Social Services, Children and Families, Education, Mental Health and Addiction Services and Public Health, the Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management and the Child Advocate, in accordance with section 11-4a of the general statutes, shall submit to the General Assembly the plans for coordinated expenditure and delivery of services to children with special health care needs.

Approved July 11, 2001