SECTION 1. Section 1 of chapter 71B of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2016 Official Edition, is hereby amended by inserting after the definition of “Least restrictive environment” the following definition:-
“Medically fragile student”, a school age child with a disability with a life-threatening impairment.
SECTION 2. Section 5 of said chapter 71B, as so appearing, is hereby amended by striking out the first paragraph and inserting in place thereof the following paragraph:-
Any school committee which provides or arranges for the provision of special education pursuant to the provisions of section 3 shall pay for such special education personnel, materials and equipment, tuition, room and board, transportation, rent and consultant services as are necessary for the provision of special education; provided, however, that the school committee shall not be obligated to pay for health care goods or services to the extent that such goods or services constitute medically necessary treatment for disease, illness, injury, or bodily dysfunction which would be covered by a third party payor but for a school-aged child’s eligibility for such goods and services under this chapter; provided, further, that the determination of medical necessity shall be made by the third party payor under its standard program of utilization review, that the school-aged child with a disability or the child’s parent or guardian if the child is a minor shall have the right to freedom of choice in the election of the provider of health care goods and services, and that the provider of health care goods and services does not have a direct or indirect financial relationship to the school committee; provided, further, that school committees may accept payment for health care goods and services provided by certified school committee employees from third party payors other than the program of medical care and assistance established under chapter 118E except as provided under section 72 of chapter 44; provided, however, that school committees may not accept payment from third party payors for health care goods and services provided to a medically fragile child and the medically fragile child or the child’s parent or guardian if the child is a minor shall have the right to freedom of choice in the election of the provider of health care goods and services. Where no such third party payor is available or such payment is disallowed by this section, school committees are not relieved of their responsibilities under this chapter, and the school-aged child with a disability or the child’s parent or guardian if the child is a minor shall have the right to freedom of choice in the election of the provider of health care goods and services.
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