SECTION 1. Section 51 of chapter 111 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2014 Official Edition, is hereby amended by inserting after the word “capacity” in line 30 the following:-
“, and needs-based emergency stabilization and treatment capacity,”
SECTION 2. Said section 51 of said chapter 111, as so appearing, is hereby further amended by inserting after the word “department” in line 32 the following:-
“; provided, that the department shall establish by regulation a minimum adequacy standard for needs-based emergency stabilization and treatment capacity, where the term “needs-based emergency stabilization and treatment capacity” shall mean capacity by an acute care hospital to stabilize, admit and treat, or to secure placement into appropriate treatment for, any patient presenting at the hospital’s emergency department with a mental or behavioral health or substance addiction crisis, where such capacity is provided for either by the maintenance of licensed beds by the hospital, or through a contractual agreement between the hospital and another mental or behavioral health or substance use disorder treatment provider where such contract reasonably guarantees a placement for that hospital’s patients. In establishing said standard, the department may rely upon its collection of data under section 51 ½ or other measures of the volume and needs of patients presenting to emergency departments. The commissioner may grant waivers to needs-based emergency stabilization and treatment capacity requirements based on legitimate financial constraints demonstrated by the licensee and confirmed by the center for health information and analysis”
SECTION 3. Sections 1 and 2 shall take effect on January 1, 2019
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