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LB 837: Create a task force to review certain drugs for state wards

As introduced: This bill would create a task force to review and provide recommendations on the use of psychotropic drugs by state wards and the administration of these drugs.

As amended: none

Introducing Senator(s): Howard

Committee: HHS

Committee Hearing Date: January 5, 2012

Current Status: amended into LB 821 – Create the Nebraska Children’s Commission and adopt the Office of Inspector General of Nebraska Child Welfare Act, as AM2138

Estimated Fiscal Impact:  The task force members would be eligible for reimbursement of actual and necessary travel expenses. The amount needed would depend on the number of meetings of the task force and the where the members live. The cost per member per meeting would vary from $0 to $500. Based on other similar task forces, committees and commissions, the costs likely would not be greater than $3,000. The costs could be reimbursed from the appropriation from the Health Care Cash Fund to the Legislature.

Voices for Children Position: Support

Voices supported LB 837 because this task force can play a vital role in protecting the safety and well being of Nebraska’s foster children, while also ensuring Nebraska fulfills new federal requirements for policies for prescribing psychotropics to foster children. Without careful policies set in place to ensure psychotropic drugs are only being prescribed to children who need them, we increase the risk to prescribe dangerous drugs to minors who do not need them.

Foster Focus
Journal of Learning Disabilities
Psychiatric Services
Journal of Social Issues
GAO Report, 2011

What other states are doing: Voices contacted organizations that are involved with foster care policy at the state level in each state.  From the states that we heard back from, we gathered information from six states who are taking steps to formalize new policies, which include:


  • Colorado
  • Idaho
  • Indiana
  • North Dakota
  • Rhode Island
  • Washington

Thank you to taking the time to share!

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