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Senate Bill No. 1343

Public Act No. 07-24

AN ACT CONCERNING COMPASSIONATE CARE FOR VICTIMS OF SEXUAL ASSAULT.

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

Section 1. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2007) (a) As used in this section:

(1) "Emergency contraception" means one or more prescription drugs used separately or in combination administered to or self-administered by a patient to prevent pregnancy, within a medically recommended amount of time after sexual intercourse and provided for that purpose, in accordance with professional standards of practice, and determined to be safe by the United States Food and Drug Administration.

(2) "Emergency treatment" means any medical examination or treatment provided in a licensed health care facility to a victim of sexual assault following an alleged sexual assault.

(3) "Medically and factually accurate and objective" means verified or supported by the weight of research conducted in compliance with accepted scientific methods and published in peer-reviewed journals, where applicable.

(4) "Victim of sexual assault" means any female person who alleges or is alleged to have suffered an injury as a result of a sexual offense.

(5) "Sexual offense" means a violation of subsection (a) of section 53a-70 of the general statutes, section 53a-70a or 53a-70b of the general statutes, subsection (a) of section 53a-71 of the general statutes, section 53a-72a or 53a-72b of the general statutes, subdivision (2) of subsection (a) of section 53a-86 of the general statutes, subdivision (2) of subsection (a) of section 53a-87 of the general statutes or section 53a-90a, 53a-196a or 53a-196b of the general statutes.

(6) "Independent provider" means a physician licensed under chapter 370 of the general statutes, a physician assistant licensed under chapter 370 of the general statutes, an advanced practice registered nurse or registered nurse licensed under chapter 378 of the general statutes, or a nurse-midwife licensed under chapter 377 of the general statutes, all of whom are trained to conduct a forensic exam in accordance with the state of Connecticut Technical Guidelines for Health Care Response to Victims of Sexual Assault, published by the Commission on the Standardization of the Collection of Evidence in Sexual Assault Investigations pursuant to section 19a-112a of the general statutes.

(b) The standard of care for each licensed health care facility that provides emergency treatment to a victim of sexual assault shall include promptly:

(1) Providing each victim of sexual assault with medically and factually accurate and objective information relating to emergency contraception;

(2) Informing such victim of sexual assault of the availability of emergency contraception, its use and efficacy; and

(3) Providing emergency contraception to such victim of sexual assault at the facility upon the request of such victim, except that a licensed health care facility shall not be required to provide emergency contraception to a victim of sexual assault who has been determined to be pregnant through the administration of a pregnancy test approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration.

(c) In order to comply with the standard of care requirements prescribed in subsection (b) of this section, a licensed health care facility may contract with one or more independent providers to: (1) Ensure compliance at the facility with the standard of care requirements prescribed in said subsection (b), and (2) conduct at the facility a forensic exam of the sexual assault victim in accordance with the state of Connecticut Technical Guidelines for Health Care Response to Victims of Sexual Assault, published by the Commission on the Standardization of the Collection of Evidence in Sexual Assault Investigations pursuant to section 19a-112a of the general statutes.

(d) No licensed health care facility that provides emergency treatment to a victim of sexual assault shall determine such facility's protocol for complying with the standard of care requirements prescribed in subsection (b) of this section on any basis other than a pregnancy test approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration.

Approved May 16, 2007