The General Assembly hit the ground running two weeks ago. As you have probably followed in the news, lawmakers have their sleeves rolled up and have been tackling some very difficult policy issues already. Here at the AHA, we have been advocating for our top policy issues and watching out for other legislation that could have an impact on our constituents and Association.
We are excited to report to you that yesterday, House Bill 105: Require Pulse Oximetry Newborn Screening had its first reading and has been assigned to the House Health and Human Services Committee. The NC Senate is expected to file a companion bill next week. We want to thank our primary bill sponsors: Representatives Jim Fulghum (R-Wake), Mark Hollo (R-Alexander), Paul “Skip” Stam (R-Wake), and Craig Horn (R-Union). In the Senate we are working with primary sponsors: Senators Andrew Brock (R-Davie) and Louis Pate (R-Wayne). As this important legislation begins to move we will be keeping you posted with action alerts and updates, so watch this blog and your email. We have also had good interest from the media in this issue and so watch your local news and newspapers for related stories. If you see one, please let us know.
Additionally, we are working closely with our lawmakers to have primary stroke center designation legislation introduced and are hoping that will happen in the next week. Along with this legislation we have been talking with legislators about the importance of NC’s Stroke Advisory Council and the community education that the Heart Disease and Stroke Program has been doing across the state. The Legislative Breakfast Briefing we held last week set the stage for conversations about what we can do in partnership with our lawmakers to build healthier lives.
What’s on the horizon? As we move through legislative session, keep checking back on our blog and I will be providing you regular updates. Don’t hesitate to ask questions or let us know what interests you.
State Lobby Day is quickly approaching and we hope we will be seeing you in Raleigh for this exciting event. You can learn more about State Lobby Day by contacting Kacie Kennedy, firstname.lastname@example.org.
From Jones Street,
Betsy Vetter, NC Director of Government Relations