2022

LEGISLATE VIRTUAL CONGRESS

IN GENERAL ASSEMBLY

April 25, 2022

AN ACT

To Make More Available Mental Health Resources for Medical Professionals

This bill shall make sure that all hospitals, doctors’ offices, and medical schools that practice or teach medicine employ a mental health professional, solely for the staff. They will be able to be contacted by any staff member, including nurses, PAs, doctors, surgeons, and anyone who works in the hospital.

Introduced By:

Date Introduced:

Referred to:

Rohan Sivva

April 25, 2022, 1:32:51 AM

BE IT ENACTED BY LEGISLATE SENATORS VIRTUALLY ASSEMBLED THAT

Glossary of Terms:

Medical Professionals - Someone with a medical license who is practicing medicine. Includes residents, fellows, medical students, nurses, PAs, and any other staff member who is essential to the hospital.

Medical Institution - Place where doctors practice medicine. This includes medical schools as well as smaller medical offices and independent practices.

Mental Health Issues - Any mental health problems that a doctor might face. This includes any emotional or mental issues such as depression, and also things such as stress, which might affect a medical professional’s ability to properly treat patients.

Psychologist/Mental Health Worker - A professional who specializes in the treatment, care, and prevention of mental health issues.

Delaware Department of Health and Social Services - Government department that takes care of medical and other social services.

Office of Health Licensing and Certification - Department that takes care of hospital licensing and regulations to maintain quality of care.

  1. From now on, every medical institution and medical school, both private and public, will be required to hire a mental health professional that any staff member can immediately contact and discuss any emotional or mental health issues that they are going though.
  2. For every hundred students, residents, medical professionals, or other employees in a medical setting, there shall be at least one mental health worker or psychologist.
  3. After hiring a mental health professional or psychologist, hospitals shall inform the state and the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services and the Office of Health Facilities Licensing and Certification. Making sure that the medical institution employs a medical profession will be added to the regular license renewal process.
  4. For small medical offices and consultation centers with under a hundred employees, there must be one psychologist that any employee can contact. Instead of a psychologist, there can also be a system where employees have access to psychiatrists outside of the office, where employees can receive mental or emotional guidance free of cost.

Punishments:

Hospitals must add a mental health worker to their staff, or else they will be fined $5000 if they have less than 100 employees and between $10,000 and $50,000 proportionate to the number of employees. This will be decided by the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services.

Enforcement:

Enactment:

To Make More Available Mental Health Resources for Medical Professionals

will go into effect on

April 24, 2022, 4:00:00 AM

This bill will go into effect January 1st of 2024, following passage as law.

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