< Back to H.R. 3426 (111th Congress, 2009–2010)

Text of the Coordinated Environmental Public Health Network Act of 2009

This bill was introduced on July 30, 2009, in a previous session of Congress, but was not enacted. The text of the bill below is as of Jul 30, 2009 (Introduced).

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Source: GPO

I

111th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 3426

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

July 30, 2009

(for herself, Ms. Slaughter, Mr. Markey of Massachusetts, Mrs. Capps, Ms. Schakowsky, Ms. Baldwin, Ms. DeLauro, Ms. McCollum, Mr. Serrano, Mr. Grijalva, and Mr. Hare) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce

A BILL

To amend the Public Health Service Act to establish a Coordinated Environmental Public Health Network.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Coordinated Environmental Public Health Network Act of 2009.

2.

Amendment to the Public Health Service Act

The Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 201 et seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following:

XXXI

Coordinated Environmental Public Health Network

3100.

Definitions

In this title:

(1)

Administrator

The term Administrator means the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.

(2)

Coordinated Network

The term Coordinated Network means the Coordinated Environmental Public Health Network established under section 3101(a).

(3)

Director

The term Director means the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

(4)

Director of the Center

The term Director of the Center means the Director of the National Center for Environmental Health at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

(5)

Medical privacy regulations

The term medical privacy regulations means the regulations promulgated under section 264(c) of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996.

(6)

Priority chronic conditions and health effects

The term priority chronic conditions and health effects means the conditions, as specified by the Secretary, to be tracked in the Coordinated Network and the State Networks.

(7)

State Network

The term State Network means a State Environmental Public Health Network established under section 3101(b).

(8)

State

The term State means a State, local government, territory, or Indian tribe that is eligible to receive a health tracking grant under section 3101(b).

3101.

Establishment of Coordinated and State Environmental Public Health Networks

(a)

Coordinated Environmental Public Health Network

(1)

Establishment

Not later than 36 months after the date of the enactment of this title, the Secretary, acting through the Director, in consultation with the Administrator and the Director of the Center, and with the involvement of other Federal agencies, and State and local health departments, shall establish and operate a Coordinated Environmental Public Health Network. In establishing and operating the Coordinated Network, the Secretary shall, as practicable—

(A)

identify, build upon, expand, and coordinate among existing data and surveillance systems, surveys, registries, and other Federal public health and environmental infrastructure as practicable, including—

(i)

the Public Health Information Network;

(ii)

State birth defects surveillance systems as supported under section 317C;

(iii)

State cancer registries as supported under part M of title III;

(iv)

State asthma surveillance systems as supported under section 317I;

(v)

the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey;

(vi)

the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System;

(vii)

the Hazardous Substance Release/Health Effects Database;

(viii)

the Hazardous Substances Emergency Events Surveillance System; and

(ix)

the State vital statistics systems as supported under section 306;

(B)

provide for public access to an electronic national database that accepts data from the State Networks on the incidence and prevalence of priority chronic conditions and health effects and relevant environmental and other factors, in a manner which protects personal privacy consistent with the medical privacy regulations;

(C)

in order to allow the public to access and understand information about environmental health at the Federal, State, and, where practicable, local level, prepare, publish, make publicly available on the Web sites of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Environmental Protection Agency, and submit to Congress not later than 2 years after the date of the enactment of this title, and biennially thereafter, a Coordinated Network Health and Environment Report, including—

(i)

identification of gaps in the data of the Network, including diseases of concern and environmental exposures not tracked;

(ii)

identification of activities carried out under this title and key milestones achieved during the preceding year; and

(iii)

an analysis of the most currently available incidence, prevalence, and trends of priority chronic conditions and health effects, and potentially relevant environmental and other factors, by State and, as practicable by local areas, and recommendations regarding high risk populations, public health concerns, response and prevention strategies, and additional tracking needs;

(D)

provide for the establishment of State Networks, and coordinate the State Networks as provided for under subsection (b);

(E)

provide technical assistance to support the State Networks;

(F)

not later than 12 months after the date of the enactment of this title, develop minimum standards and procedures for data collection and reporting for the State Networks, to be updated not less than annually thereafter; and

(G)

in developing the minimum standards and procedures under subparagraph (F), include mechanisms for allowing the States to set priorities, and allocate resources accordingly.

(2)

Data collection and reporting by State networks

The minimum standards and procedures referred to in paragraph (1)(F) shall include—

(A)

a list and definitions of the priority chronic conditions and health effects to be tracked through the State Networks;

(B)

a list and definitions of relevant environmental exposures of concern to be tracked, to the extent practicable, through the State Networks, including—

(i)

hazardous air pollutants (as defined in section 302(g) of the Clean Air Act);

(ii)

air pollutants for which national primary ambient air quality standards have been promulgated under section 109 of the Clean Air Act;

(iii)

pollutants or contaminants (as defined in section 101 of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980);

(iv)

toxic chemicals (as described in section 313 of the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act of 1986);

(v)

substances reported under the Toxic Substances Control Act Inventory Update Rule as provided for in part 710 of title 40, Code of Federal Regulations, or successor regulations;

(vi)

pesticides (as defined in section 2(u) of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act); and

(vii)

such other potentially relevant environmental factors as the Secretary may specify;

(C)

a list and definitions of potentially relevant behavioral, socioeconomic, and demographic factors known to be associated with these priority chronic conditions and health effects and other risk factors, such as race, ethnic status, gender, age, occupation, and primary language, to be tracked through the State Networks;

(D)

procedures for the complete and timely collection and reporting of data to the Coordinated Network by local areas, such as a census tract or other political subdivision determined appropriate by the Secretary, in consultation with the Administrator, regarding the factors described in subparagraphs (A), (B), and (C);

(E)

procedures for making data available to the public and researchers, and for reporting to the Coordinated Network, while protecting the confidentiality of all personal data reported, in accordance with medical privacy regulations; and

(F)

standards and procedures for the establishment, operation, and maintenance of laboratories conducting biomonitoring, in order to expand the scope and amount of biomonitoring data collected by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as described in section 3104.

(b)

State Environmental Public Health Networks

(1)

Grants

Not later than 12 months after the date of the enactment of this title, the Secretary, acting through the Director, in consultation with the Administrator and the Director of the Center shall award grants to States for the establishment, maintenance, and operation of State Networks in accordance with the minimum standards and procedures established by the Secretary under subsection (a)(1)(F).

(2)

Specialized assistance

The Coordinated Network shall provide specialized assistance to grantees in the establishment, maintenance, and operation of State Networks.

(3)

Requirements

A State receiving a grant under this subsection shall use the grant—

(A)

to establish an environmental public health network that will provide—

(i)

for the tracking of the incidence, prevalence, and trends of priority chronic conditions and health effects, as well as any additional priority chronic conditions and health effects and potentially related environmental exposures of concern to that State;

(ii)

for identification of priority chronic conditions and health effects and potentially relevant environmental and other factors that disproportionately impact low income and minority communities;

(iii)

for the protection of the confidentiality of all personal data reported, in accordance with the medical privacy regulations;

(iv)

a means by which confidential data may, in accordance with Federal and State law, be disclosed to researchers for the purposes of public health research;

(v)

the fullest possible public access to data collected by the State Network or through the Coordinated Network, while ensuring that individual privacy is protected in accordance with subsection (a)(1)(B); and

(vi)

for the collection of exposure data through biomonitoring and other methods, which may include the entering into of cooperative agreements as described in section 3104;

(B)

to develop a publicly available plan for establishing the State Network in order to meet minimum standards and procedures as developed by the Secretary under subsection (a)(1)(F);

(C)

to appoint a lead public health department or agency that will be responsible for the development, operation, and maintenance of the State Network, and ensure the appropriate coordination among State and local agencies, including environmental agencies, regarding the development, operation, and maintenance of the State Network; and

(D)

to recruit and train public health officials to continue to expand the State Network.

(4)

Limitation

A State that receives a grant under this section may not use more than 10 percent of the funds made available through the grant for administrative costs.

(5)

Application

To seek a grant under this section, a State shall submit to the Secretary an application at such time, in such form and manner, and accompanied by such information as the Secretary may specify.

(c)

Pilot Projects

(1)

In general

A State may apply for a grant under this subsection to implement a pilot project that is approved by the Secretary, acting through the Director and in consultation with the Administrator, and the Director of the Center.

(2)

Activities

A State shall use amounts received under a grant under this subsection to carry out a pilot project designed to develop State Network enhancements and to develop programs to address specific local and regional concerns.

(3)

Results

The Secretary may consider the results of the pilot projects under this subsection for inclusion into the Coordinated Network.

(d)

Privacy

In establishing and operating the Coordinated Network under subsection (a), and in making grants under subsections (b) and (c), the Secretary shall ensure the protection of privacy of individually identifiable health information, including ensuring protection consistent with the regulations promulgated under section 264(c) of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996.

(e)

Authorization of Appropriations

There are authorized to be appropriated to carry out this section such sums as may be necessary for each of fiscal years 2010 through 2014.

3102.

Increasing public health personnel capacity

(a)

In general

Beginning in fiscal year 2010, the Secretary, acting through the Director, shall enter into a cooperative agreement with the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists to train and place, in State and local health departments, applied epidemiology fellows to enhance State and local public health capacity in the areas of environmental health, chronic and other noninfectious diseases and conditions, and public health surveillance.

(b)

Authorization of appropriations

There are authorized to be appropriated to carry out this section such sums as may be necessary for each of fiscal years 2010 through 2014.

3103.

General provisions

(a)

Integration of environmental health tracking programs

The Secretary shall integrate the enactment of this title with all environmental health tracking programs funded prior to the date of the enactment of this title, including by integrating the programs, in existence on the date of the enactment of this title, to develop State Network enhancements and to develop programs to address specific local and regional concerns.

(b)

Coordination With Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry

In carrying out this title, the Secretary, acting through the Director, shall coordinate activities and responses with the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry.

3104.

Expansion of biomonitoring capabilities and data collection

(a)

Purpose

It is the purpose of this section to expand the scope and amount of biomonitoring data collected and analyzed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, State laboratories, and consortia of State laboratories, in order to obtain robust information, including information by geographically defined areas and subpopulations, about a range of environmental exposures.

(b)

In general

In meeting the purpose of this section, the Secretary shall ensure that biomonitoring data are collected intramurally through appropriate sources, including the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, and extramurally shall enter into collaboration or partnerships with other entities to obtain additional information regarding vulnerable subpopulations or other subpopulations.

(c)

Cooperative agreements

(1)

In general

The Secretary, acting through the Director, shall enter into cooperative agreements with States or consortia of States to support the purposes of this title.

(2)

Applications

Applications for such cooperative agreements by consortia of States shall address the manner in which such States will coordinate activities with other States in the region, and shall designate a lead State for administrative purposes.

(3)

Training and quality assurance

The Secretary, acting through the Director, shall through the cooperative agreements with States or a consortia of States provide laboratory training and quality assurance.

(d)

Privacy

In carrying out this section, the Secretary shall ensure the protection of privacy of individually identifiable health information, including ensuring protection consistent with the regulations promulgated under section 264(c) of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996.

(e)

Authorization of appropriations

There are authorized to be appropriated to carry out this section such sums as may be necessary for each of fiscal years 2010 through 2014.

.