Week 6 of the South Dakota Legislative session has concluded with several healthcare related bills taking center stage. A few key issues to be aware of focus on medical conscience legislation.
House Bill 1242 will allow medical practice on the basis of conscience. On Wednesday Feb. 16, an amendment to the bill was introduced, which significantly changes the intent to mirror medical conscience legislation from last year. The hearing on this measure is expected in the next week.
House Bill 1258, was also heavily amended. It will protect an individual’s conscience from entities requiring the COVID-19 vaccine. Lawmakers passed it out of committee on a 7 to 6 vote.
House Bill 1267, will allow certain medical professionals to dispense ivermectin to persons. It was amended in committee changing language that said a practitioner could dispense to now “prescribe”. It also removed the section of the bill saying ivermectin could be prescribed with or without a prescription. It passed out of committee last week by one vote, and on Monday Feb. 14, the House of Representatives passed it 40-28. Medicaid expansion ended its run early this week when the full Senate failed to pass it, the final vote was 12-23 vote.
A few wins this week both in passing legislation and successfully killing bills that could negatively impact healthcare, including House Bill 1030. It passed out of House Appropriations on Tuesday and then the full house on Wednesday. It will continue to fund the healthcare recruitment assistance program.
House Bill 1008, failed to make it out of committee by a close 7 to 6 vote. It would have allowed employees that are required to get vaccinated by their employer and not offered an exemption, the ability to sue their employer.
House Bill 1180 was also tabled this week, it would have permitted designated visitors into nursing homes, which would have conflicted with federal regulations.
To stay on top of the 2022 Legislative session or any of the bills SDAHO is actively following, visit the SDAHO Bill Tracker for the most up-to-date information.