Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations
Kentucky Bill Would Require HIV Testing for Newborns
Kentucky state Sen. Alice Kerr on Wednesday introduced a bill (SB 153) that would make HIV testing in Kentucky a "routine component of prenatal care" and mandate HIV testing for all newborns whose mothers' HIV status is unknown (Children's AIDS Fund release, 2/15). The "Baby AIDS Act" calls for the state Department for Public Health to "develop and implement a training program to reach all licensed and certified health care practitioners who provide prenatal care or HIV counseling for pregnant women or newborns; ... require testing of the newborn for HIV if the mother was not tested during pregnancy; ... require a physician treating a pregnant woman to test, subject to informed consent, the woman for HIV; require [the] health care provider who conducts the HIV test to first inform the woman about benefits of testing and confidentiality and make referrals for counseling" (SB 153 text, 2/16). Modeled after a similar Connecticut law, the bill meets the requirements of the federal Baby AIDS component of the Ryan White CARE Act of 2000, and thus the state is eligible for additional federal funding if the bill is enacted (Children AIDS Fund release, 2/15).
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