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  • NJ A4522
  • Allows hospice care programs to accept unused prescription medications for disposal under certain circumstances.
Introduced
(1/23/2017)
In Committee
(5/11/2017)
Crossed OverPassedSignedDead/Failed/Vetoed
2016-2017 Regular Session
This bill authorizes licensed hospice care programs to accept unused prescription medications for disposal under certain circumstances. Specifically, a hospice care program may voluntarily choose to accept for disposal, at such time as a hospice care patient receiving hospice services in an assisted living facility or private residence ceases to receive such services, any unused medications that were prescribed to the patient. A licensed hospice care program that chooses to accept unused prescription medications for disposal will be required to establish a written policy setting forth the procedures for accepting unused prescription medications, which is to be furnished to each patient, and the patient's health care representative, at the time the patient is enrolled in the hospice care program. Additionally, at the time of enrollment, a program representative is to discuss the procedures and requirements for surrendering unused prescription medications with the patient and the patient's health care representative. Hospice care programs that choose to accept unused prescription medications for disposal will additionally be required to obtain any certifications, authorizations, and waivers as may be required under State or federal law in order to accept and dispose of unused prescription medications. A hospice care program may not accept any medication for surrender except at such time as the patient ceases to receive hospice care services. At the time a patient ceases to receive hospice care services from a program that accepts unused prescription medications for disposal, a program representative will be required to provide the patient or the patient's health care representative with a written request for the surrender of unused medications, which will include: (1) a request that any unused prescription medications prescribed and dispensed to the patient pursuant to the patient's hospice care plan be surrendered to the program; (2) an offer to accept any other prescription medications that the patient will not use; and (3) a recommendation that the patient or the patient's health care representative dispose of any unused prescription medications that are not surrendered to the program in a safe and legal manner, so as to avoid the risk of theft, diversion, or accidental ingestion. The bill requires a hospice care program to obtain written authorization from the patient or the patient's health care representative prior to accepting an unused prescription medication for disposal. If the patient is unable to provide written authorization, and the patient does not have a health care representative, a third party caregiver, who is defined in the bill as a person 18 years of age or older who provides care and services to the patient but is not the patient's health care representative, a family member of the patient, or employed by the patient's hospice care program, will be permitted to provide authorization. No medication may be accepted for disposal by a hospice care program unless it is identified for inclusion in an authorization for surrender. Under the bill, unused prescription medications may only be surrendered to a registered professional nurse or licensed practical nurse employed by the hospice care program. Any medication surrendered to the program is to be disposed of at the site where the patient was receiving hospice care services, and in no case may a surrendered medication be transported off site. A nurse accepting the surrender of an unused prescription medication will be required to document: the name and quantity of each medication surrendered; the name of the person providing the authorization and the relationship of that person to the patient; the date and method of disposal; and any unused prescription medication that the nurse is aware of that was provided to the patient pursuant through the program but was not surrendered to the program or otherwise disposed of by another person in the nurse's presence. The person providing authorization will have the opportunity to review, verify, and sign this documentation. Nothing in the bill will prevent any person from disposing of an unused prescription medication by any means authorized by law, including, but not limited to, surrender to a secure prescription drop-off receptacle. The bill provides immunity from civil and criminal liability for any act or omission undertaken in good faith consistent with the provisions of the bill. Hospice care patients are often prescribed a number of medications, which may include powerful opioid analgesics used to manage pain symptoms. It is the sponsor's belief that allowing hospice care programs to accept a hospice care patient's unused prescription medications may help ensure the safe and speedy disposal of these medications, thereby reducing the risk that the medications may be stolen, diverted, or accidentally ingested.
2nd Reading in the Assembly, Health and Senior Services, Substituted by another Bill
Substituted by S2970 (1R)  (on 6/22/2017)
 
 
Date Chamber Action Description
6/22/2017 A Substituted by S2970 (1R)
5/11/2017 A Reported out of Assembly Comm. with Amendments, 2nd Reading
5/11/2017 Assembly Health and Senior Services Hearing (19:00 5/11/2017 A-4789 Conaway pending intro and referral. Requires naltrexone a)
1/23/2017 A Introduced, Referred to Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee
Date Motion Yea Nay Other
Detail 5/11/2017 Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee: Reported with Amendments 11 0 2