OLR Bill Analysis

sSB 917 (File 656, as amended by Senate "A")*

AN ACT CONCERNING SCHOOL-BASED HEALTH CENTERS.

SUMMARY:

This bill establishes a statutory definition for a “school-based health center” (SBHC) and permits the Department of Public Health (DPH) to adopt regulations to establish minimum quality standards for these centers. Under the bill, an SBHC:

1. is located in or on the grounds of a school facility of a school district, school board, Indian tribe, or tribal organization;

2. is organized through school, community, and health provider relationships;

3. is administered by a sponsoring facility (e.g., hospital, health department, community health center, or nonprofit health or human services agency); and

4. provides comprehensive on-site medical and behavioral health services to children and adolescents according to state and local law.

The bill prohibits anyone from using (1) the term SBHC to describe a facility or (2) any words or abbreviations that may be reasonably confused with this term, unless the facility meets the bill's definition.

Additionally, the bill establishes a statutory definition for an “expanded school health site” and extends to these sites certain statutory provisions regarding SBHCs. Among other things, this means the (1) sites may receive DPH grants for community-based primary care providers, (2) SBHC Advisory Council must advise the DPH commissioner on matters related to the sites, and (3) sites are exempt from DPH's certificate of need requirements.

Under the bill, an “expanded school health site” means the same as an SBHC, except that it (1) does not include health centers located in or on the grounds of an Indian tribe or tribal organization and (2) provides either medical or behavioral services, including dental services, counseling, health education, and screening and prevention services.

The bill also makes technical changes.

*Senate Amendment “A” (1) defines “expanded school health sites” and extends to these sites certain laws pertaining to SBHCs; (2) permits, rather than requires, DPH to adopt regulations on minimum quality standards for SBHCs; and (3) specifies that SBHCs must provide on-site comprehensive medical and behavioral health services.

EFFECTIVE DATE: October 1, 2015

COMMITTEE ACTION

Public Health Committee

Joint Favorable Substitute

Yea

27

Nay

0

(03/27/2015)