STAND. COM. REP. NO. 1049

 

Honolulu, Hawaii

, 2021

 

RE: S.B. No. 1285

S.D. 2

H.D. 1

 

 

 

 

Honorable Scott K. Saiki

Speaker, House of Representatives

Thirty-First State Legislature

Regular Session of 2021

State of Hawaii

 

Sir:

 

Your Committee on Health, Human Services, & Homelessness, to which was referred S.B. No. 1285, S.D. 2, entitled:

 

"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO MEDICAL FACILITIES,"

 

begs leave to report as follows:

 

The purpose of this measure is to require any hospital that serves a community having more than five hundred Compact of Free Association benefit recipients to:

 

(1) Establish diversity and inclusion training for all staff; and

 

(2) Hire interpreters and community healthcare workers as necessary to bridge the language and cultural divide with the community.

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from The Queen's Health Systems, Hawaii Coalition for Immigrant Rights, and five individuals. Your Committee received comments on this measure from the Department of the Attorney General, Kaiser Permanente Hawaii, Healthcare Association of Hawaii, Hawaii Pacific Health, and one individual.

 

Your Committee finds that many Compact of Free Association (COFA) benefit recipients have experienced prejudice and discrimination in the health care system and as a result no longer use medical facilities as a first option to treat illness. Your Committee further finds that, with the reinstatement of Medicaid and Children's Health Insurance Program eligibility, many COFA benefit recipients are now able to participate in Medicaid and will no longer be part of the State's uninsured population. This measure will reduce barriers to health care by developing programs to bridge cultural and language gaps between health care providers and COFA benefit recipients.

 

Your Committee has amended this measure by:

 

(1) Requiring only Hawaii Health Systems Corporation hospitals in counties with an area greater than four thousand square miles who serve Compact of Free Association benefit recipients to establish diversity and inclusion staff training and hire interpreters and community health care workers, as needed;

 

(2) Requiring the Hawaii Health Systems Corporation to provide oversight and enforcement of the diversity and inclusion staff training and hiring of interpreters and community health care workers, as needed;

 

(3) Requiring the Hawaii Health Systems Corporation to make a report to the Legislature on the status of the diversity and inclusion staff training and the hiring of interpreters and community health care workers;

 

(4) Changing the effective date to July 1, 2060, to encourage further discussion; and

 

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

 

As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Health, Human Services, & Homelessness that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 1285, S.D. 2, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 1285, S.D. 2, H.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Consumer Protection & Commerce.

Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Health, Human Services, & Homelessness,

 

 

 

 

____________________________

RYAN I. YAMANE, Chair