California Legislature—2015–16 Regular Session

Assembly BillNo. 972


Introduced by Assembly Member Jones

February 26, 2015


An act to add Section 103886 to the Health and Safety Code, relating to disease reporting.

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL’S DIGEST

AB 972, as introduced, Jones. Ken Maddy California Cancer Registry.

Existing law requires the State Department of Public Health to establish a statewide system for the collection of information determining the incidence of cancer known as the Ken Maddy California Cancer Registry. Existing law authorizes the department to designate any demographic parts of the state as regional cancer incidence reporting areas and establish regional cancer registries to provide cancer incidence data. Under existing law, all cancers diagnosed or treated in the reported area are required to be reported to the department or the authorized representative of the department. Existing regulations require cancer reporting facilities and physicians to employ a mechanism to ensure that their patients are informed that the facility will report each patient with cancer to the State Department of Public Health as required by law.

Under existing law, health care practitioners, including, among others, physicians and surgeons, and any hospital or other facility providing diagnostic or treatment services to patients with cancer are required to grant to the department or the authorized representative access to all records that would identify cases of cancer or would establish characteristics of the cancer, treatment of the cancer, or medical status of any identified cancer patient. All information collected pursuant to those provisions is generally required to be kept confidential. Existing law authorizes the department to enter into agreements to furnish confidential information to specified persons and entities, including other states’ cancer registries, local health officers, and health researchers.

This bill would require the State Department of Public Health to inform a patient diagnosed with cancer by, or receiving cancer therapy treatment from, a specified health care practitioner, or a hospital or other facility within an area designated as a cancer reporting area of the reporting requirement, and would require the department to also notify a patient of specified information, including, among other things, that the department is authorized to release confidential patient information to health researchers. The bill would prohibit cancer reporting facilities and physicians from being required to employ a mechanism to ensure that their patients are informed that the facility will report each patient with cancer to the State Department of Public Health.

Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes. State-mandated local program: no.

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:

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SECTION 1.  

Section 103886 is added to the Health and Safety
2Code
, to read:

3

103886.  

(a) (1) A patient diagnosed with cancer, or provided
4treatment for cancer, by a physician and surgeon, dentist, podiatrist,
5or other health care practitioner or a patient receiving cancer
6therapy treatment from any hospital or other facility within an area
7designated as a cancer reporting area shall be informed by the
8department of the reporting requirement described in subdivision
9(d) of Section 103885. Cancer reporting facilities and physicians
10shall not be required to employ a mechanism to ensure that their
11patients are informed that cancer has been designated as a
12reportable disease or that the facility will report each patient with
13cancer to the department.

14 (2) The department shall notify the patient of all of the following
15information:

16(A) A description of the cancer registry, as provided in
17subdivisions (a) and (b) of Section 103885.

18(B) An explanation of how the department obtains all records
19that would identify cases of cancer and the type of information
P3    1collected by the department, as described in subdivision (f) of
2Section 103885.

3(C) The purposes for which the information obtained by the
4department is collected and intended to be used, as described in
5subdivision (g) of Section 103885.

6(D) The authority of the department to release confidential
7patient information to any person with a valid scientific interest,
8other states’ cancer registries, federal cancer control agencies,
9local health officers, or health researchers, pursuant to subdivision
10(g) of Section 103885.

11(E) The discretion of a patient to refuse to participate in any
12research study and to request that his or her contact information
13be withheld.

14(F) The benefits of participating in cancer research, including,
15but not limited to, the opportunity to contribute to the discovery
16of improved treatments and survival rates for cancer patients.

17(b) All notifications to the patient required under this section
18shall be distributed in a cost-effective manner, including, but not
19limited to, by e-mail.

20(c) The department shall adopt regulations as it determines are
21necessary for the implementation of this section in accordance
22with the Administrative Procedure Act, Chapter 3.5 (commencing
23with Section 11340) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the
24 Government Code.



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