Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 2.2. Administration of Government
Chapter 2. Governor's Secretaries
3/8/2021

Article 6. Secretary of Health and Human Resources.

§ 2.2-212. Position established; agencies for which responsible; additional powers.

A. The position of Secretary of Health and Human Resources (the Secretary) is created. The Secretary of Health and Human Resources shall be responsible to the Governor for the following agencies: Department of Health, Department for the Blind and Vision Impaired, Department of Health Professions, Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services, Department of Social Services, Department of Medical Assistance Services, Virginia Department for the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing, the Office of Children's Services, and the Assistive Technology Loan Fund Authority. The Governor may, by executive order, assign any other state executive agency to the Secretary of Health and Human Resources, or reassign any agency listed above to another Secretary.

B. As requested by the Secretary and to the extent authorized by federal law, the agencies of the Secretariat shall share data, records, and information about applicants for and recipients of services from the agencies of the Secretariat, including individually identifiable health information for the purposes of (i) streamlining administrative processes and reducing administrative burdens on the agencies, (ii) reducing paperwork and administrative burdens on the applicants and recipients, and (iii) improving access to and quality of services provided by the agencies.

C. Unless the Governor expressly reserves such power to himself, the Secretary shall (i) serve as the lead Secretary for the coordination and implementation of the long-term care policies of the Commonwealth and for the blueprint for livable communities 2025 throughout the Commonwealth, working with the Secretaries of Transportation, Commerce and Trade, and Education, and the Commissioner of Insurance, to facilitate interagency service development and implementation, communication, and cooperation; (ii) serve as the lead Secretary for the Children's Services Act, working with the Secretary of Education and the Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security to facilitate interagency service development and implementation, communication, and cooperation; and (iii) coordinate the disease prevention activities of agencies in the Secretariat to ensure efficient, effective delivery of health related services and financing.

1976, c. 729, §§ 2.1-51.13, 2.1-51.14, 2.1-51.15; 1978, c. 635; 1982, cc. 345, 459; 1983, c. 20; 1984, cc. 720, 781; 1985, cc. 447, 448; 1987, cc. 219, 698; 1988, cc. 646, 765; 1989, cc. 614, 695; 1990, c. 458; 1991, c. 563; 1994, c. 755; 1996, cc. 492, 902; 1998, c. 793; 2000, c. 937; 2001, cc. 577, 844; 2004, cc. 14, 142; 2006, cc. 344, 380; 2007, cc. 10, 399, 534, 581; 2009, cc. 813, 840; 2010, cc. 411, 801; 2012, cc. 803, 835; 2014, cc. 115, 490; 2015, c. 366; 2017, c. 467.

§ 2.2-213. Secretary of Health and Human Resources to develop certain criteria.

In order to respond to the needs of substance abusing women and their children, the Secretary shall develop criteria for (i) enhancing access to publicly funded substance abuse treatment programs in order to effectively serve pregnant substance abusers; (ii) determining when a drug-exposed child may be referred to the early intervention services and tracking system available through Part C of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 20 U.S.C. § 1431 et seq.; (iii) determining the appropriate circumstances for contact between hospital discharge planners and local departments of social services for referrals for family-oriented prevention services, when such services are available and provided by the local social services agency; and (iv) determining when the parent of a drug-exposed infant, who may be endangering a child's health by failing to follow a discharge plan, may be referred to the child protective services unit of a local department of social services.

The Secretary shall consult with the Commissioner of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, the Commissioner of Social Services, the Commissioner of Health, community services boards, behavioral health authorities, local departments of social services, and local departments of health in developing the criteria required by this section.

1992, c. 428, § 2.1-51.15:1; 2001, c. 844; 2009, cc. 813, 840.

§ 2.2-213.1. Secretary of Health and Human Resources and Commissioner of Insurance to develop long-term care public information campaign.

A. In order to respond to the burgeoning population of seniors in the Commonwealth, the Secretary of Health and Human Resources and the Commissioner of Insurance shall develop a public information campaign to inform the citizens of the Commonwealth of (i) the impending crisis in long-term care, (ii) the effect of the impending crisis on the Virginia Medicaid program and on the finances of families and their estates, (iii) innovative alternatives and combinations of institutional and community-based long-term care services, and (iv) the requirements for long-term care insurance certificates and policies and the meaning of terminology used in such certificates and policies.

B. The Secretary of Health and Human Resources and the Commissioner of Insurance shall enlist the assistance of the Board of Health and the Commissioner of Health, in the exercise of their responsibilities set forth in Title 32.1 to protect, implement, and preserve the public health, in disseminating the information concerning long-term care to the public.

2005, c. 92.

§ 2.2-213.2. Secretary to coordinate system for children with incarcerated parents.

The Secretary of Health and Human Resources, in consultation with the Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security, shall establish an integrated system for coordinating the planning and provision of services for children with incarcerated parents among state, local, nonprofit agencies, and faith-based organizations in order to provide such children with services needed to continue parental relationships with the incarcerated parent, where appropriate, and encourage healthy relationships in the family and community.

2006, c. 366; 2014, cc. 115, 490.

§ 2.2-213.3. Secretary to coordinate electronic prescribing clearinghouse.

A. In order to promote the implementation of electronic prescribing by health practitioners, health care facilities, and pharmacies in order to prevent prescription drug abuse, improve patient safety, and reduce unnecessary prescriptions, the Secretary of Health and Human Resources, in consultation with the Secretary of Administration, shall establish a website with information on electronic prescribing for health practitioners. The website shall contain (i) information concerning the process and advantages of electronic prescribing, including using medical history data to prevent drug interactions, prevent allergic reactions, and deter abuse of controlled substances; (ii) information regarding the availability of electronic prescribing products, including no-cost or low-cost products; (iii) links to federal and private-sector websites that provide guidance on selecting electronic prescribing products; and (iv) links to state, federal, and private-sector incentive programs for the implementation of electronic prescribing.

B. The Secretary of Health and Human Resources, in consultation with the Secretary of Administration, shall regularly consult with relevant public and private stakeholders to assess and accelerate the implementation of electronic prescribing in Virginia. For purposes of this section, relevant stakeholders include, but are not limited to, organizations that represent health practitioners, organizations that represent health care facilities, organizations that represent pharmacies, organizations that operate electronic prescribing networks, organizations that create electronic prescribing products, and regional health information organizations.

2009, c. 479; 2020, c. 738.

§ 2.2-213.4. Secretary of Health and Human Resources to develop blueprint for long-term services and supports.

The Secretary shall convene, as appropriate, such other heads of executive branch secretariats, state agencies and other public and private agencies and entities to develop a blueprint for livable communities and long-term services and supports for older Virginians and people with disabilities. The blueprint shall include planning through the year 2025 and shall be comprehensive and inclusive of issues related to active, daily life in communities across the Commonwealth. The blueprint shall build upon existing plans and reports and shall focus on (i) community integration and involvement, (ii) availability and accessibility of services and supports, and (iii) integration and participation in the economic mainstream. The blueprint shall be submitted to the Governor and Chairs of the Appropriations Committee of the House of Delegates and the Finance Committee of the Senate no later than June 30, 2011.

2010, cc. 411, 801.

§ 2.2-213.5. Dissemination of information about specialized training to prevent and minimize mental health crisis.

The Secretary of Health and Human Resources and the Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security shall encourage the dissemination of information about specialized training in evidence-based strategies to prevent and minimize mental health crises in all jurisdictions. This information shall be disseminated to, but not limited to, law-enforcement personnel, other first responders, hospital emergency department personnel, school personnel, and other interested parties, to the extent possible. These strategies shall include (i) crisis intervention team (CIT) training for law-enforcement personnel and other first responders as designated by the community CIT task force and (ii) mental health first aid training for other first responders, hospital emergency department personnel, school personnel, and other interested parties. The Secretary of Health and Human Resources and the Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security shall encourage adherence to the models of training and achievement of programmatic goals and standards. The goals for CIT training shall include (i) training participants to recognize the signs and symptoms of behavioral health disorders; (ii) teaching participants the skills necessary to de-escalate crisis situations and how to support individuals in crisis; (iii) educating participants about community-based resources available to individuals in crisis; and (iv) enhancing participants' ability to communicate with health systems about the nature of the crisis to include rules regarding confidentiality and protected health information. The goals for mental health first aid training shall be to teach the public (to include first responders, school personnel, and other interested parties) how to recognize symptoms of mental health problems, how to offer and provide initial help, and how to guide a person toward appropriate treatments and other supportive help.

2014, c. 601.

§ 2.2-214. Responsibility of certain agencies within the Secretariat; review of regulations.

The Boards of Health, Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, Social Services, and Medical Assistance Services and the Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services shall review their regulations and policies related to service delivery in order to ascertain and eliminate any discrimination against individuals infected with human immunodeficiency virus.

1989, c. 613, § 2.1-51.14:1; 1992, c. 755; 2001, c. 844; 2009, cc. 813, 840; 2012, cc. 803, 835.

§ 2.2-214.1. Healthy Lives Prescription Fund; nonreverting; purposes; report.

A. There is hereby created in the Department of the Treasury a special nonreverting fund that shall be known as the Healthy Lives Prescription Fund.

B. The Fund shall be established on the books of the Comptroller. The Fund shall consist of such moneys appropriated by the General Assembly and any funds available from the federal government, donations, grants, and in-kind contributions made to the Fund for the purposes stated herein. Interest earned on moneys in the Fund shall remain in the Fund and be credited to it. Any moneys remaining in the Fund, including interest thereon, at the end of each fiscal year shall not revert to the general fund but shall remain in the Fund.

C. Moneys in the Fund shall be available to develop and implement programs that will enhance current prescription drug programs for citizens of the Commonwealth who are without insurance or ability to pay for prescription drugs and to develop innovative programs to make such prescription drugs more available.

D. The Secretary shall provide an annual report on the status of the Fund and efforts to meet the goals of the Fund.

2003, cc. 661, 674.