House Bill 455
151st General Assembly (Present)
Becomes effective upon date of signature of the Governor or upon date specified
AN ACT TO AMEND TITLES 24, 10, 11, AND 18 RELATING TO THE WOMEN’S REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH.
Section 1 and 2. These sections defines “reproductive health services” for the Board of Medical Practice, the Board of Nursing, and Regulatory Council for Physician Assistants, and makes clear that physicians, physician assistants and nurses who perform, recommend, or provide reproductive health services, if such services are lawful in this State, do not engage in unprofessional conduct and cannot be disciplined for such services even if such services are illegal or considered to be unprofessional conduct or the unauthorized practice of medicine or nursing in another state. This section also authorizes the following to terminate pregnancy before viability: (1) A physician assistant with a collaborative agreement with an appropriately training physician; and (2) A certified nurse midwife or certified nurse practitioner who demonstrates knowledge and competency, including successful completion of a training or certification approved by the Board of Nursing. Section 3. This section prohibits a health care provider from disclosing communications and records concerning reproductive health services, but does provide exceptions including if such records are requested for the purposes of investigating a complaint against a health care provider and the records are relevant to such complaint or to if requested to investigate a claim of abuse and such records are relevant to such investigation. This section also provides protections and limitations against civil actions from another state relating to the termination of pregnancy. Such protections and limitations include the issuance of a summons for a criminal case or investigation, and the issuance of a subpoena for information or testimony relating to the termination of pregnancy. This section also creates a cause of action for persons against whom a judgment was entered in another state based upon allegedly providing, receiving, or helping another person to provide or receive reproductive health services that are legal in Delaware. This section allows the person to recover damages from any party that brought the original action that resulted in the judgment or tried to enforce it. The damages available are just damages resulting from the original action as well as costs, expenses, and reasonable attorney’s fees spent bringing the action under this section as permitted by the court. The cause of action is unavailable if no part of the acts that formed the basis for liability occurred in Delaware. It is also unavailable if the judgment entered in the other state is based on a claim similar to one that exists under Delaware law and: (1) is a claim brought by a or the patient’s legal representative for damages the patient suffered or from another individual’s loss of consortium with the patient; or (2) is a contract based claim brought or enforced by a someone with a contractual relationship with the person who is subject to the judgment. Section 4. This section limits non-fugitive extradition of someone for committing an act that results in a criminal charge for the termination of pregnancy in another state. Pursuant to this bill, a person may only be extradited if the acts for which extradition is sought are punishable under Delaware law if their consequences, as claimed by the other state, had taken effect in this state. Section 5. This section prohibits an insurer from increasing the premium or taking any adverse action against a health care professional or health care organization for performing or providing reproductive health care services that are lawful in this State and covers any medical professional who prescribes medication for the termination of human pregnancy to an out-of-state patient by means of telehealth.