Legislative Issues on Premature Babies

Louisiana bill requires RSV reporting

Louisiana bill ACT 456 was signed by the Governor on June 6th with an effective date of August 1, 2014. The bill requires Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) be reported when such a test is conducted by a laboratory or hospital.

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Smoking Bans Linked to Drop in Premature Births, Kids' Asthma Attacks

Bans on smoking in public places and the workplace in North America and Europe are linked to a 10 percent drop in premature births and the number of children going to the hospital for an asthma flare-up, according to a new study. The study authors said this positive trend occurred within one year of smoke-free policies being put into effect. They added that their findings show smoking bans have significant health benefits for both adults and children.

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Tennessee likely to cut program that monitors preemies

Since taking office almost three years ago, Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam has mandated 5 percent annual cuts in the state's budget. And those ongoing cuts may now affect a critical program that pays hospitals to care for perinatal patients.

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State Policy and Improving Maternal and Child Health Services

Effect of Provider Payment Reforms on Maternal and Child Health Services explores state policy activities to reduce costs while improving maternal and child health outcomes. In particular, this paper from the National Governors Association addresses reforms that have the potential to significantly improve outcomes for vulnerable populations such as children with special health care needs and women of color. Policy innovations described in the paper include medical and health homes, quality-based payment incentives, bundled payments for episodes of care, and accountable care organizations.

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Reducing Preterm Births in Illinois: Prematurity Task Force Report

With a renewed national focus on prematurity by public health organizations, and the severe global toll of preterm birth, the Illinois General Assembly recently passed House Joint Resolution 111. The resolution stipulated that the Perinatal Advisory Committee of the Illinois Department of Public Health submit a written report providing findings and recommendations concerning the reduction of preterm births in Illinois. The report was intended to raise the awareness of policy makers, advocacy groups, providers, and the public about this serious problem, and to recommend proven strategies to move Illinois towards the reduction of premature births. The Perinatal Advisory Committee outlined seven recommendations with background, rationale, and required actions.

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