Connecticut Seal

General Assembly

File No. 244

    February Session, 2018

Substitute House Bill No. 5341

House of Representatives, April 5, 2018

The Committee on Education reported through REP. FLEISCHMANN of the 18th Dist., Chairperson of the Committee on the part of the House, that the substitute bill ought to pass.

AN ACT PROVIDING IMMUNITY FROM LIABILITY FOR SCHOOL BUS DRIVERS WHO MAY ADMINISTER EPINEPHRINE TO A STUDENT IN AN EMERGENCY SITUATION.

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

Section 1. Section 52-557b of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2018):

(a) A person licensed to practice medicine and surgery under the provisions of chapter 370 or dentistry under the provisions of section 20-106 or members of the same professions licensed to practice in any other state of the United States, a person licensed as a registered nurse under section 20-93 or 20-94 or certified as a licensed practical nurse under section 20-96 or 20-97, a medical technician or any person operating a cardiopulmonary resuscitator or a person trained in cardiopulmonary resuscitation in accordance with the guidelines set forth by the American Red Cross or American Heart Association, or a person operating an automatic external defibrillator, who, voluntarily and gratuitously and other than in the ordinary course of such person's employment or practice, renders emergency medical or professional assistance to a person in need thereof, shall not be liable to such person assisted for civil damages for any personal injuries which result from acts or omissions by such person in rendering the emergency care, which may constitute ordinary negligence. A person or entity that provides or maintains an automatic external defibrillator shall not be liable for the acts or omissions of the person or entity in providing or maintaining the automatic external defibrillator, which may constitute ordinary negligence. The immunity provided in this subsection does not apply to acts or omissions constituting gross, wilful or wanton negligence. With respect to the use of an automatic external defibrillator, the immunity provided in this subsection shall only apply to acts or omissions involving the use of an automatic external defibrillator in the rendering of emergency care. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to exempt paid or volunteer firefighters, police officers or emergency medical services personnel from completing training in cardiopulmonary resuscitation or in the use of an automatic external defibrillator in accordance with the guidelines set forth by the American Red Cross or American Heart Association. For the purposes of this subsection, "automatic external defibrillator" means a device that: (1) Is used to administer an electric shock through the chest wall to the heart; (2) contains internal decision-making electronics, microcomputers or special software that allows it to interpret physiologic signals, make medical diagnosis and, if necessary, apply therapy; (3) guides the user through the process of using the device by audible or visual prompts; and (4) does not require the user to employ any discretion or judgment in its use.

(b) A paid or volunteer firefighter or police officer, a teacher or other school personnel on the school grounds or in the school building or at a school function, a member of a ski patrol, a lifeguard, a conservation officer, patrol officer or special police officer of the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, or emergency medical service personnel, who has completed a course in first aid offered by the American Red Cross, the American Heart Association, the National Ski Patrol, the Department of Public Health or any director of health, as certified by the agency or director of health offering the course, and who renders emergency first aid to a person in need thereof, shall not be liable to such person assisted for civil damages for any personal injuries which result from acts or omissions by such person in rendering the emergency first aid, which may constitute ordinary negligence. No paid or volunteer firefighter, police officer or emergency medical service personnel who forcibly enters the residence of any person in order to render emergency first aid to a person whom such firefighter, police officer or emergency medical service personnel reasonably believes to be in need thereof shall be liable to such person for civil damages incurred as a result of such entry. The immunity provided in this subsection does not apply to acts or omissions constituting gross, wilful or wanton negligence.

(c) An employee of a railroad company, including any company operating a commuter rail line, who has successfully completed a course in first aid, offered by the American Red Cross, the American Heart Association, the National Ski Patrol, the Department of Public Health or any director of health, as certified by the agency or director of health offering the course, and who renders emergency first aid or cardiopulmonary resuscitation to a person in need thereof, shall not be liable to such person assisted for civil damages for any personal injury or death which results from acts or omissions by such employee in rendering the emergency first aid or cardiopulmonary resuscitation which may constitute ordinary negligence. The immunity provided in this subsection does not apply to acts or omissions constituting gross, wilful or wanton negligence.

(d) A railroad company, including any commuter rail line, which provides emergency medical training or equipment to any employee granted immunity pursuant to subsection (c) of this section shall not be liable for civil damages for any injury sustained by a person or for the death of a person which results from the company's acts or omissions in providing such training or equipment or which results from acts or omissions by such employee in rendering emergency first aid or cardiopulmonary resuscitation, which may constitute ordinary negligence. The immunity provided in this subsection does not apply to acts or omissions constituting gross, wilful or wanton negligence.

(e) (1) For purposes of this subsection, "cartridge injector" means an automatic prefilled cartridge injector or similar automatic injectable equipment used to deliver epinephrine in a standard dose for emergency first aid response to allergic reactions.

(2) Any volunteer worker associated with, or any person employed to work for, a program offered to children sixteen years of age or younger by a corporation, other than a licensed health care provider, that is exempt from federal income taxation under Section 501 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, or any subsequent corresponding internal revenue code of the United States, as from time to time amended, who (A) has been trained in the use of a cartridge injector by a licensed physician, physician assistant, advanced practice registered nurse or registered nurse, (B) has obtained the consent of a parent or legal guardian to use a cartridge injector on his or her child, and (C) uses a cartridge injector on such child in apparent need thereof participating in such program, shall not be liable to such child assisted or to such child's parent or guardian for civil damages for any personal injury or death which results from acts or omissions by such worker in using a cartridge injector which may constitute ordinary negligence. The immunity provided in this subsection does not apply to acts or omissions constituting gross, wilful or wanton negligence.

(3) A corporation, other than a licensed health care provider, that is exempt from federal income taxation under Section 501 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, or any subsequent corresponding internal revenue code of the United States, as from time to time amended, which provides training in the use of cartridge injectors to any volunteer worker granted immunity pursuant to subdivision (2) of this subsection shall not be liable for civil damages for any injury sustained by, or for the death of, a child sixteen years of age or younger who is participating in a program offered by such corporation, which injury or death results from acts or omissions by such worker in using a cartridge injector, which may constitute ordinary negligence. The immunity provided in this subsection does not apply to acts or omissions constituting gross, wilful or wanton negligence.

(f) A teacher or other school personnel, on the school grounds or in the school building or at a school function, who has completed both a course in first aid in accordance with subsection (b) of this section and a course given by the medical advisor of the school or by a licensed physician in the administration of medication by injection, who renders emergency care by administration of medication by injection to a person in need thereof, shall not be liable to the person assisted for civil damages for any injuries which result from acts or omissions by the person in rendering the emergency care of administration of medication by injection, which may constitute ordinary negligence. The immunity provided in this subsection does not apply to acts or omissions constituting gross, wilful or wanton negligence.

(g) The provisions of this section shall not be construed to require any teacher or other school personnel to render emergency first aid or administer medication by injection.

(h) Any person who has completed a course in first aid offered by the American Red Cross, the American Heart Association, the National Ski Patrol, the Department of Public Health or any director of health, as certified by the agency or director of health offering the course, or has been trained in the use of a cartridge injector by a licensed physician, physician assistant, advanced practice registered nurse or registered nurse, and who, voluntarily and gratuitously and other than in the ordinary course of such person's employment or practice, renders emergency assistance by using a cartridge injector on another person in need thereof, or any person who is an identified staff member of a before or after school program, day camp or child care facility, as defined in section 19a-900, and who renders emergency assistance by using a cartridge injector on another person in need thereof, shall not be liable to such person assisted for civil damages for any personal injuries which result from acts or omissions by such person in using a cartridge injector, which may constitute ordinary negligence. The immunity provided in this subsection does not apply to acts or omissions constituting gross, wilful or wanton negligence. For the purposes of this subsection, "cartridge injector" has the same meaning as provided in subdivision (1) of subsection (e) of this section.

(i) A school bus driver, on or in the immediate vicinity of a school bus during the provision of school transportation services, who renders emergency care by administration of medication with a cartridge injector to a student in need thereof who has a medically diagnosed allergic condition that may require prompt treatment in order to protect the student against serious harm or death, shall not be liable to the student assisted for civil damages for any injuries which result from acts or omissions by the school bus driver in rendering the emergency care of administration of medication with a cartridge injector, which may constitute ordinary negligence. The immunity provided in this subdivision does not apply to acts or omissions constituting gross, wilful or wanton negligence. For the purposes of this subsection, "cartridge injector" has the same meaning as provided in subdivision (1) of subsection (e) of this section.

This act shall take effect as follows and shall amend the following sections:

Section 1

July 1, 2018

52-557b

ED

Joint Favorable Subst.

 

The following Fiscal Impact Statement and Bill Analysis are prepared for the benefit of the members of the General Assembly, solely for purposes of information, summarization and explanation and do not represent the intent of the General Assembly or either chamber thereof for any purpose. In general, fiscal impacts are based upon a variety of informational sources, including the analyst's professional knowledge. Whenever applicable, agency data is consulted as part of the analysis, however final products do not necessarily reflect an assessment from any specific department.


OFA Fiscal Note

State Impact: None

Municipal Impact: None

Explanation

The bill does not result in a fiscal impact, as it provides immunity from civil liability to bus drivers who provide an emergency administration of epinephrine by a cartridge injector to certain students. Immunity from civil liability does not have a fiscal impact to the state or to local and regional boards of education.

The Out Years

State Impact: None

Municipal Impact: None

OLR Bill Analysis

sHB 5341

AN ACT PROVIDING IMMUNITY FROM LIABILITY FOR SCHOOL BUS DRIVERS WHO MAY ADMINISTER EPINEPHRINE TO A STUDENT IN AN EMERGENCY SITUATION.

SUMMARY

This bill provides immunity from civil liability to bus drivers who provide an emergency administration of epinephrine by a cartridge injector to certain students.

Under the bill, a bus driver may administer the medication to a student with a diagnosed allergic condition to protect against serious harm or death without civil liability for injuries resulting from ordinary negligence during the administration. It must occur either on or in the immediate vicinity of a school bus during the provision of school transportation services.

The immunity does not extend to acts or omissions that constitute gross, willful, or wanton negligence.

The bill defines “cartridge injector” as an automatic, prefilled cartridge injector or similar automatic injectable equipment, used to deliver a standard dose of epinephrine during an emergency allergic reaction.

EFFECTIVE DATE: July 1, 2018

COMMITTEE ACTION

Education Committee

Joint Favorable Substitute

Yea

35

Nay

0

(03/23/2018)

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