NEW YEAR, BIG CHANGES FOR STATE LAWS

A legislative column from Assemblywoman Nancy Calhoun (R,C,I-Blooming Grove)
With the start of a new year there are many new laws of which the public should be aware. While some of these changes may not impact you, I feel it is important that you know what is going on. Some of the new laws cover still births, automatic defibrillators, oral chemotherapy and smoking.
Among these new laws is one that I am particularly proud to have helped create. Beginning on March 21, the Department of Health can issue certificates of still birth when requested by a family.
· This new law can help ease the pain of grieving families because the issuance of a death certificate recognizes that a life was lost.
· Chapter 522, Effective date: 3/21/2012.
Another new law, which took effect on January 1, requires that all facilities where dentistry is practiced shall possess an automatic external defibrillator or other defibrillator at the facility.
· The purpose is to help decrease cardiac complications for patients who suffer from heart conditions during dental procedures.
· Chapter 65, Effective date: 1/1/2012.
In addition, a new law requires insurance companies to cover orally administered chemotherapy treatments.
·  With recent breakthroughs in medicine, treatment can be offered to patients in the comfort and privacy of their homes instead of requiring hospital treatments only.
· Chapter 559, Effective date, 1/1/2012.
Finally, another law which took effect on January 1 is the ban on selling smoking paraphernalia, including tobacco products, herbal cigarettes and hookahs, to minors.
· This law closes a loophole in existing tobacco laws and will help further protect young people from the health dangers associated with smoking.
· Chapter 131, Effective date, 1/1/2012.
For any questions regarding these new laws or other state issues, please feel free to contact me by calling 845-567-3141 or send me an email at calhoun@assembly.state.ny.us.