STAND. COM. REP. NO. 2079
RE: S.B. No. 2264
Honorable Donna Mercado Kim
President of the Senate
Twenty-Seventh State Legislature
Regular Session of 2014
State of Hawaii
Your Committees on Human Services and Health, to which was referred S.B. No. 2264 entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO CAREGIVING,"
beg leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to enable caregivers to provide competent post-hospital care to their loved ones, at minimal cost to taxpayers, by:
(1) Allowing a patient the opportunity, upon entry to a hospital, to designate a caregiver;
(2) Requiring hospitals to notify and meet with the designated caregiver to discuss the patient's plan of care; and
(3) Requiring hospitals to instruct the designated caregiver in after-care tasks upon a patient's discharge.
Your Committees received testimony in support of this measure from the AARP Hawaii, Healthcare Association of Hawaii, Hawaii Family Caregiver Coalition, Hawaii Primary Care Association, International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 142 Hawaii, and seven individuals.
Your Committees find that there are approximately 247,000 unpaid family caregivers in Hawaii that serve as the backbone and support for Hawaii's aging residents and those with physical or cognitive limitations. These caregivers provide services that are valued annually at $2,000,000,000. In addition, unpaid caregivers help prevent unnecessary hospital readmissions by providing adequate care for their family members and loved ones. Each year, $17,000,000,000 in Medicare funds is spent on unnecessary hospital readmissions, and Hawaii's hospitals are subject to federal financial penalties due to excessive readmissions.
Your Committees further find that the role of unpaid caregivers is expanding to include medical and nursing tasks that historically were only provided in hospitals and nursing homes or by home care professionals. The tasks most commonly performed by caregivers are medication management, help with assistive mobility devices, preparing food for special diets, and wound care. This measure recognizes the importance of unpaid caregivers and their need for adequate training and support.
Your Committees have amended this measure by:
(1) Inserting an effective date of July 1, 2050, to encourage further discussion; and
(2) Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity and consistency.
As affirmed by the records of votes of the members of your Committees on Human Services and Health that are attached to this report, your Committees are in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 2264, as amended herein, and recommend that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 2264, S.D. 1, and be referred to the Committee on Judiciary and Labor.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committees on Human Services and Health,
JOSH GREEN, Chair
SUZANNE CHUN OAKLAND, Chair