Senate President Troy Jackson and Speaker of the House Ryan Fecteau announced the first bill for the 130th Maine Legislature on Monday morning during a press conference. LD 1 would create a COVID-19 patients bill of rights. The proposal will be the first bill of the new session of the Maine Legislature.

LD 1, An Act To Establish the COVID-19 Patient Bill of Rights, is about making sure nothing prevents Mainers from receiving the health care they need to protect themselves, their families and loved ones from the coronavirus.

This bill establishes certain requirements for the protection of health care consumers with regard to testing, treatment and immunization for COVID-19. The bill also makes changes to improve access to prescription drugs and to health care services through telehealth.

Part A of the bill requires health insurance carriers to provide coverage for COVID-19

screening, testing and immunization services and prohibits a carrier from imposing any cost-sharing requirements on consumers for those services.

Part B of the bill authorizes a pharmacist to administer COVID-19 vaccines licensed by the United States Food and Drug Administration that are recommended by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices for administration to a person 16 years of age or older. It also provides that registered nurses, providers of osteopathic medicine, providers of allopathic medicine, podiatrists and dentists may prescribe to a patient a prescription drug for an extended period of time, not to exceed a 180-day supply, during a state of emergency declared by the Governor.

Part C of the bill authorizes the delivery of health care services through telehealth by audio-only telephone.

Megan Diver

Megan has worked in Maine politics for more than ten years and all of her professional career, having served in many roles for elected officials (including former Secretary of State Charlie Summers), in-house with the Maine Association of REALTORS®, legislative specialist at Pierce Atwood LLP providing lobbying services and support to Pierce Atwood’s government relations clients and most recently senior government relations specialist at the Maine State Chamber of Commerce. Megan currently is the Vice President at the Maine Energy Marketers Association, utilizing her vast knowledge and legislative experience at the State House to represent MEMA on policies relating to the Association and its members.