May 03, 2018

New State Laws Address Imaging-Related Issues

A review of the Statescape medical legislation tracking system reveals several new laws and legislative developments relevant to radiology’s practice and regulation.

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin has signed SB 1103, a bill that adds digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT) to the definition of low-dose mammography and requires all health benefit plans to include coverage for DBT as of November 1, 2018. Oklahoma is the twelfth state to commit to a DBT insurance coverage mandate.

In Kentucky, Gov. Matt Bevin signed SCR 176, a bill urging the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services, Department for Medicaid Services (DMS) to improve colorectal cancer screening services for the state’s Medicaid recipients. The approved legislation will also require DMS to ensure that all colorectal cancer screening services criteria for Kentucky’s Medicaid managed care plans align, at a minimum, with the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) guidelines for reducing colorectal cancer mortality.

In Colorado, Gov. John Hickenlooper signed SB 146, a bill that will require freestanding emergency departments (FSED) to provide certain written and oral disclosures to patients before and after emergency screenings beginning on August 8, 2018. The State Board of Health may promulgate rules to implement and enforce these disclosure requirements. The bill defines the types of facilities that qualify as FSED and exempts currently licensed community clinics from the bill's disclosure requirements if they serve a rural community or ski area. Before screenings, a FSED must provide patients with a written statement, also read aloud by a FSED staff member, explaining their rights.

California legislators are considering SB 1034, legislation that deletes the January 1, 2019, sunset date for existing law that requires breast imaging services to notify women in writing when the results of their mammography indicate the presence of dense breasts.

In Massachusetts, the House and Senate both passed HB 151, a bill that would establish a board of registration for medical physics.

And in Tennessee, both legislative houses approved HB 2321, a bill that would create of a five-member board of ultrasound sonographers and establish education, training and certification guidelines and safety protocols for ultrasound sonographers who work in the state’s non-clinical ultrasound boutiques. The legislation also would require that persons practicing ultrasound sonography in a nonclinical 3-D/4-D ultrasound boutique, as defined by the health commissioner, to be at least 18 years of age and comply with specified requirements. If signed by the Gov. Bill Haslam, the legislation will take effect January 1, 2019.