BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

                                                                  AB 64
                                                                  Page  1

          Date of Hearing:   May 9, 2007

                                  Mark Leno, Chair

                     AB 64 (Berg) - As Amended:  April 18, 2007 

          Policy Committee:                              Business and  
          Professions  Vote:                            10 - 0
                        Health                                17 - 0

          Urgency:     No                   State Mandated Local Program:  
          No     Reimbursable:              


          This bill would allow healthcare and veterinary professionals to  
          voluntarily register their appropriate licenses and credentials  
          with the Emergency Medical Services Authority (EMSA) in  
          California so that they may be called on to provide appropriate  
          services and care during a state, local or health emergency or a  
          state of war.  In addition, this bill provides that any  
          voluntary health practitioner who is providing services will be  
          considered an employee of this state for workers compensation  

           FISCAL EFFECT 

          1)Administrative costs of less than $100,000 to create and  
            administer the registry.

          2)Unknown, but potentially significant, state workers  
            compensation costs to the extent that a voluntary health  
            practitioner is injured when providing assistance during an  
            emergency or traveling to or from an emergency. 


           1)Purpose  . This bill is intended to significantly streamline the  
            process of credentialing health care professionals during an  
            emergency.  Currently, the mechanics of qualifying interstate  
            recognition of health care volunteers varies from state to  
            state.  By pre-registering volunteers and establishing  
            interstate agreements, health care practitioners can be  
            dispatched to emergencies in other states more quickly without  


                                                                  AB 64
                                                                  Page  2

            having to meet the other state's licensing requirements.  
            Likewise, as this is part of a national effort to create a  
            uniform system to recognize out-of-state health care  
            professionals and veterinarians who volunteer their services  
            during an emergency, this legislation will enable to governor  
            to enter into mutual aid agreements which will allow out of  
            state health care professionals to quickly begin assisting  
            California in case of an emergency.

            The author states that the delayed response following  
            Hurricanes Katrina and Rita revealed that, although laws exist  
            to provide for the interstate recognition of licenses issued  
            to "federalized" healthcare workers and state public employees  
            (EMAC provides for the deployment of "state resources"), no  
            uniform and readily understood system exists to recognize  
            licenses issued to other health professionals traveling from  
            one state to another to assist during these disasters. 

           2)Workers' Compensation Coverage  . The State of California, as an  
            employer, and many cities and counties are self-insured for  
            workers' compensation claims. Payments are treated in a pay as  
            you go manner. Therefore, any increase in workers'  
            compensation claims has a direct impact on state and local  
            funds. For non-self-insured employers, premiums are paid  
            through a private insurer or the State Compensation Insurance  
            Fund (SCIF).  

          Analysis Prepared by  :    Julie Salley-Gray / APPR. / (916)