Four bills sponsored by Sen. Marko Liias signed into law

State Sen. Marko Liias

Four bills sponsored by 21st District Sen. Marko Liias were signed into law by Gov. Jay Inslee earlier this week:

SB 5313 – Gender Affirming Treatment Act

The Gender Affirming Treatment Act will prohibit health insurers from denying or limiting coverage for gender affirming treatment that is consistent with a protected gender expression or identity, is medically necessary, and is prescribed in accordance with accepted standards of care. Many health plans in Washington state classify gender confirmation treatment as cosmetic and therefore such treatment is often not included in health insurance plans. This bill ensures that trans and gender fluid Washingtonians can get access to essential care.

“Gender confirmation treatment is medically necessary for many in our transgender community, but they are not able to access this treatment because it is considered cosmetic by many health plans,” Liias said. “The goal is to ensure every Washingtonian has access to medically necessary care that allows them to lead healthy, productive lives. And to achieve the health equity and health outcomes we wish for every single Washingtonian.”

SB 5194, also known as the Our Colleges Our Future Act

This bill requires that all community and technical colleges prioritize equity, diversity, and inclusion of all students by funding programs that are proven to benefit those most vulnerable in our higher education institutions. It also modifies current statutes that hinder vulnerable students to create more equal access to these institutions of learning.

SB 5195 – Opioid medication

SB 5195 requires hospital emergency rooms and certain community behavior health agencies to dispense opioid overdose reversal medication to a patient with symptoms of an opioid overdose, opioid use disorder, or another adverse event related to opioid use upon discharge. More than 81,000 people died from a drug overdose in America between June 2019 and May 2020 according to the CDC and NCHS. More than 45,000 of those deaths were related to opioid use. SB 5195 is part of the ongoing effort to address the opioid epidemic and aims to save more lives.

SB 5253 – Boosting the state’s bee population

Washington farmers produced over $3 billion in agriculture that require pollination from bees. However, bee populations in Washington state are on the decline, putting these crops and others at serious risk. SB 5253 reestablishes the Pollinator Health Task Force to assist with implementation of the prior task force’s recommendations and the pollinator health strategy.

 

  1. Our State Government Leading the Way…
    HB 5313 Gender Affirming Treatment Act: Increase health care costs
    HB 5914 Our Colleges Our Future: Divisive. Indoctrination.
    HB 5194 Opioid Medication: OK, but is the government spending any money on curtailing the drugs coming across the Southern Boarder? Or requiring treatment of drug addition? Prevention would be good!
    SB 5253 Boosting the State’s bee Population: Good cause! However, wouldn’t want to put that on my job resume.

  2. Local Rep. ignores more prosaic things like fixing roads, filling potholes, enhancing telecommuting, reducing crime and working on housing. Is this what you voted for?

  3. SB 5195 could be a good suggestion or reminder but that’s the end of it. “Require it?” No.

    This narcotic reversal medication is itself a narcotic, controlled fully by the Federal Drug Enforcement Administration. Every prescription in the country is recorded. The State has no jurisdiction. Emergency Rooms and Behavioral Health Agencies can’t prescribe anything, only their individual licensed prescribers can.

    “NEW SECTION. Sec. 3. A new section is added to chapter 70.41 RCW to read as follows: (1) A hospital shall provide a person who presents to an emergency department with symptoms of an opioid overdose, opioid use disorder, or other adverse event related to opioid use with opioid overdose reversal medication upon discharge, unless the treating p. 4 2SSB 5195.PL 1 practitioner determines in their clinical and professional judgment 2 that dispensing or distributing opioid overdose reversal medication 3 is not appropriate or the practitioner has confirmed that the patient 4 already has opioid overdose reversal medication.”

    Almost all medication prescribing is very restricted by law both at the State and Federal levels. I see nowhere that medication prescribing is required and ordered by laws. It is always up to the authorized prescriber to decide whether or not a medication is required. The State is not authorized to prescribe or stop a medication. Therefore this law should fail in the courts.

    Who can prescribe: https://www.doh.wa.gov/LicensesPermitsandCertificates/ProfessionsNewReneworUpdate/PharmacyCommission/WhoCanPrescribeandAdministerPrescriptions

    The State has only one hammer, a prescriber’s license to practice. Misuse of this hammer could see all medical care in the State disappear.

    Interestingly what is not mentioned in this news brief is that the major part of the Bill is about setting up a “State Account” that requires ALL purchasing of the narcotic reversal medication to be done from this State Account. The actual reasons for this are not stated and can only be speculated upon…State coffers, clouding the DEA?

  4. “This bill requires that all community and technical colleges prioritize equity, diversity, and inclusion of all students by funding programs that are proven to benefit those most vulnerable in our higher education institutions. It also modifies current statutes that hinder vulnerable students to create more equal access to these institutions of learning.”

    What does this even mean?

  5. Maybe they could ask for help for people who cannot afford their meds for diabetes. And many many more things that are Not covered by Insurance or Medicare?

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