Honolulu, Hawaii



RE:    S.B. No. 2637

       S.D. 1




Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi

President of the Senate

Thirtieth State Legislature

Regular Session of 2020

State of Hawaii




     Your Committee on Commerce, Consumer Protection, and Health, to which was referred S.B. No. 2637 entitled:




begs leave to report as follows:


     The purpose and intent of this measure is to require:


     (1)  The Department of Health to establish, implement, and evaluate a statewide program for early identification of and intervention for lead poisoning in infants; and


     (2)  Insurers to provide coverage for the screenings for lead poisoning.


     Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from Hawaii Children's Action Network Speaks!, Healthy Mothers Healthy Babies Coalition of Hawaii, and Early Childhood Action Strategy.  Your Committee received comments on this measure from the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs and Department of Health.


     Your Committee finds that lead poisoning can cause permanent health damage, including intellectual disabilities; learning and behavior problems; high blood pressure; and damage to the brain, nervous system, kidneys, and red blood cells.  Even at low levels, lead exposure can result in adverse health effects, especially in young children.  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the effects of childhood lead poisoning are most effectively treated through early intervention programs before the age of three.  Under federal law, all Medicaid-insured children are to be tested for lead at one and two years of age, but no mandate currently exists at the state level.  Therefore, this measure further protects Hawaii's children by establishing the appropriate testing for lead hazards and the effects of lead poisoning.


     Your Committee has amended this measure by:


     (1)  Changing references of "screen" or "screening" to "test" or "testing";


     (2)  Deleting language that would have required regular testing of children ages three or older for lead poisoning;


     (3)  Inserting language that defers to health care providers to determine lead exposure risk for children three years of age and older and the need for blood lead testing;


     (4)  Deleting language related to recommended screening protocol;


     (5)  Deleting language related to early intervention services for children younger than four years of age who are identified as having a blood lead level of ten micrograms of lead per deciliter of blood or higher; and


     (6)  Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity and consistency.


     As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Commerce, Consumer Protection, and Health that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 2637, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 2637, S.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Ways and Means.


Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Commerce, Consumer Protection, and Health,