The Assembly Committee on Mental Health Reform met this past Monday morning to vote on the ten bills (see below) recommended by the Assembly Speakers Task Force on Alzheimer’s & Dementia Nine of the bills passed unanimously, however one bill faced bi-partisan concern and opposition – Assembly Bill 791, which would require Community-Based Residential Facilities (CBRFs) to provide informed consent on psychotropic prescriptions that have “black box” warnings. AB-791 passed the committee on a vote of 6-4 vote with Rep. Rodriguez (R-Oak Creek), Rep. Considine (D-Baraboo), Rep. Riemer (D-Milwaukee) and Rep. Brostoff (D-Milwaukee) voting in opposition.
The legislators voting in opposition commended the author of the bill, Rep. Rohrkaste (R-Neenah), for his leadership and achievements as chair of the special task force – however, each voiced concerns whether the CBRF was the right entity to obtain the informed consent or whether it should be the physician \ prescriber who has the education and expertise and who is qualified to understand and explain the dangers of psychotropic drugs with a “black box” warning. All ten of the Alzheimer’s Dementia bills, including AB-791, could be voted on by the full Assembly next week on Tuesday, February 9th.
WALA, along with other provider associations, are asking legislators to oppose AB-791 (CBRF Informed Consent).
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Ask Them to Oppose Assembly Bill 791 – CBRF Informed Consent
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- CBRFs do not prescribe medications, only physicians and other medical professionals have prescribing authority.
- CBRF resident care is primary provided by non-licensed/certified personnel, who are not qualified to discuss psychotropic medications with residents or family or to answer their questions.
- Information or conversations on the use of psychotropic medications should be between the resident/legal decision maker and the Doctor or prescriber.
- This bill creates more regulations, more paperwork, potentially more penalties/forfeitures from state, more lawsuits, and higher insurance premiums.
The Full Alzheimer’s – Dementia Package:
AB-783 – Funding for a virtual dementia tour license and making an appropriation.
AB-784 – Funding for the Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and making an appropriation.
AB-785 – Dementia specialist certification program.
AB-786 – Report on dementia crisis unit pilot program and placement of individuals with dementia.
AB-787 – Funding for respite care under the Alzheimer’s Family and Caregiver Support Program and making an appropriation.
AB-788 – Funding for dementia care specialists in aging and disability resource centers and making an appropriation.
AB-789 – Continuing legal and judicial education on elder law-related issues.
AB-790 – Dementia training grants for mobile crisis teams and making an appropriation.
AB-791 – Informed consent for psychotropic medications in nursing homes and community-based residential facilities. (Note: Provider associations representing CBRFs have expressed their concern and opposition to this bill).
AB-792 – Referrals for subjects of alerts for missing adults and operator’s license review.