State of Illinois
92nd General Assembly

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[ Introduced ][ House Amendment 001 ]


HB3267 Engrossed                               LRB9204544DJgc

 1        AN ACT in relation to health.

 2        Be it enacted by the People of  the  State  of  Illinois,
 3    represented in the General Assembly:

 4        Section  1.  Short  title.  This  Act may be cited as the
 5    Hepatitis C Public Awareness Act.

 6        Section 5. Findings; intent.
 7        (a)  The General Assembly finds and declares all  of  the
 8    following:
 9             (1)  Hepatitis  C  is classified as a silent killer,
10        where no  recognizable  signs  or  symptoms  occur  until
11        severe liver damage has occurred.
12             (2)  Hepatitis C has been characterized by the World
13        Health Organization as a disease of  primary  concern  to
14        humanity.
15             (3)  Studies  indicate  that 1.8% of the population,
16        nearly 4,000,000 Americans,  carry  the  virus  HCV  that
17        causes  hepatitis  C.   In  Illinois,  as many as 200,000
18        individuals  may  be  carriers  and  could  develop   the
19        debilitating   and   potentially   deadly  liver  disease
20        associated with hepatitis C in their lifetime.  An expert
21        panel, convened by the  National  Institutes  of  Health,
22        estimated  that  30,000  acute  new infections occur each
23        year in the United States, and only 25 to 30  percent  of
24        those  are  diagnosed. Current data sources indicate that
25        8,000 to 10,000 Americans die from hepatitis C each year.
26             (4)  Studies   also   indicate   that   inmates   in
27        correctional   facilities  have  a  higher  incidence  of
28        hepatitis C  than  the  general  population.  Upon  their
29        release  from prison, these inmates present a significant
30        health risk to the general population.
31        (b) It is the intent of the General Assembly to study the
HB3267 Engrossed            -2-                LRB9204544DJgc
 1    adequacy of the health care delivery system as it pertains to
 2    hepatitis C.
 3        (c) It is the intent of the General Assembly to urge  the
 4    Department  of  Public  Health  to  make  moneys available to
 5    community-based not-for-profit  organizations  for  education
 6    and outreach with respect to the hepatitis C virus.

 7        Section 10. Public education and outreach.
 8        (a)  The  Director  of  Public  Health  shall develop and
 9    implement a public education and outreach  program  to  raise
10    awareness  of  the  hepatitis  C virus.  The program shall be
11    aimed at high-risk groups, physicians' offices,  health  care
12    workers,  and  health  care facilities.  The program shall do
13    all of the following:
14             (1)  Attempt  to  coordinate  with  national  public
15        education  efforts  related  to  the  identification  and
16        notification    of    recipients    of     blood     from
17        hepatitis-C-virus-positive donors.
18             (2)  Attempt to stimulate interest in and coordinate
19        with community-based organizations to  sponsor  community
20        forums,   and   undertake   other  appropriate  community
21        outreach activities.
22             (3) Employ public communication strategies utilizing
23        a variety of media that may  include,  but  need  not  be
24        limited to, print, radio, television, and the Internet.
25        (b)   The   Director   of  Public  Health  shall  include
26    information on co-infection of human  immunodeficiency  virus
27    (HIV)  or  hemophilia  with  the  hepatitis  C  virus  in the
28    professional training and all appropriate care and  treatment
29    programs under the jurisdiction of the Department.
30        (c) The Director of Public Health shall develop a program
31    to  work  with  the  Department  of  Corrections  to identify
32    hepatitis-C-virus-positive  inmates  likely  to  be  released
33    within 2 years and provide counseling and  treatment  options
HB3267 Engrossed            -3-                LRB9204544DJgc
 1    to reduce the community risk.
 2        (d) The Director of Public Health shall urge local public
 3    health   officials   to  make  hepatitis  C  virus  screening
 4    available for uninsured individuals upon request.
 5        (e) The Director of Public Health shall include hepatitis
 6    C counseling, education,  and  testing,  as  appropriate,  in
 7    local  State-funded programs, including those addressing HIV,
 8    tuberculosis, sexually transmitted  disease,  and  all  other
 9    appropriate programs approved by the Director.

10        Section  15.  Health  professionals and community service
11    providers.
12        (a) The Department of Public Health shall make  protocols
13    and  guidelines  on  hepatitis  C  developed  by the National
14    Institutes of Health available for educating  physicians  and
15    health professionals and training community service providers
16    on  the  most  recent  scientific  and medical information on
17    hepatitis C detection,  transmission,  diagnosis,  treatment,
18    and therapeutic decision making.
19        (b)  The  guidelines may include, but need not be limited
20    to, the following:
21             (1) Tracking and reporting of both acute and chronic
22        cases of hepatitis C by public health officials.
23             (2) A  cost-efficient  plan  to  screen  the  prison
24        population and the medically indigent population.
25             (3)  Protocols  within the Department of Corrections
26        to  enable  that  Department   to   provide   appropriate
27        prevention and treatment to prisoners with hepatitis C.
28             (4)  Protocols  for  the  education  of correctional
29        peace officers and other correctional  workers  who  work
30        with prisoners with hepatitis C.
31             (5)  Protocols  for  public  safety  and health care
32        workers who come into contact with hepatitis C patients.
33             (6)   Surveillance   programs   to   determine   the
HB3267 Engrossed            -4-                LRB9204544DJgc
 1        prevalence of hepatitis C in ethnic and  other  high-risk
 2        populations.
 3             (7)  Education  and  outreach programs for high-risk
 4        individuals, including, but not limited  to,  individuals
 5        who    received    blood    transfusions   before   1992,
 6        hemophiliacs, women who underwent a caesarian section  or
 7        premature  delivery  before 1990, persons who received an
 8        organ  transplant  before  1990,  persons   who   receive
 9        invasive cosmetic procedures, including body piercing and
10        tattooing,  students, minority communities, and any other
11        categories of  persons  at  high  risk  for  hepatitis  C
12        infection as determined by the Director of Public Health.
13        Education  and  outreach  programs  shall  be targeted to
14        high-risk individuals  as  determined  by  the  Director.
15        Education  programs may provide information and referrals
16        on hepatitis C, including, but not limited to,  education
17        materials   developed   by  health-related  companies  or
18        community-based or national advocacy  organizations,  and
19        referrals   to   advocacy  organizations,  counseling  or
20        patient  support  groups,  and  existing   hotlines   for
21        consumers.
22        (c) Nothing in this Section shall be construed to require
23    the  Department  of  Public  Health to develop or produce any
24    protocol, guideline, or proposal.

25        Section 20.  Corrections.  The  Director  of  Corrections
26    shall do all of the following:
27             (1)   On  or  before  March  1,  2002,  provide  the
28        Department of Public Health with  an  annual  statistical
29        report  on  the  prevalence  of  the hepatitis C virus in
30        correctional facilities in this State and trends  in  the
31        incidence  and prevalence of the hepatitis C virus in the
32        correctional system.
33             (2) Establish and make available a voluntary program
HB3267 Engrossed            -5-                LRB9204544DJgc
 1        to test inmates for the presence of the hepatitis C virus
 2        upon incarceration and in conjunction  with  any  routine
 3        blood testing.
 4             (3)  Update  treatment protocols and regimens as new
 5        therapies become available.

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