A. Communities lack the ability to coordinate, across jurisdictions, health partnership efforts between local governments and private providers of health care services, which leads to duplicative and inefficient services. Such public/private partnerships could (i) encourage the use of service delivery that otherwise might have required government funding or programs; (ii) allow governments to fully participate in such partnerships; (iii) maximize the willingness of individuals, agencies and private organizations to lend their expertise to help satisfy community needs; (iv) allow innovative funding mechanisms to leverage public funds; (v) allow appropriate information sharing to ensure the adequacy and quality of services delivered; (vi) provide liability protection for volunteers providing services under programs sponsored or approved by the authority; (vii) provide a mechanism to ensure that services provided in the community are necessary, appropriate, and provided by trained and supervised persons; and (viii) allow volunteers and others to focus their energies to achieve community health improvement. Health care services include, but are not limited to, treatment of and education about acute and chronic diseases, wellness and prevention activities that promote the health of communities, and access to services and activities.
B. The governing body of a locality may by ordinance or resolution, or the governing bodies of two or more localities may by concurrent ordinances or resolutions or by agreement, create a local health partnership authority which shall have as its purpose developing partnerships between public and private providers. The ordinance, resolution or agreement creating the authority shall not be adopted or approved until a public hearing has been held on the question of its adoption or approval. The authority shall be a public body politic and corporate.
C. The governing body of each participating locality shall cause to be advertised at least one time in a newspaper of general circulation in such locality a copy of the ordinance, resolution or agreement creating the authority, or a descriptive summary of the ordinance, resolution or agreement and a reference to the place where a copy of such ordinance, resolution or agreement can be obtained, and notice of the day, not less than 30 days after publication of the advertisement, on which a public hearing will be held on the ordinance, resolution or agreement.
D. No authority created pursuant to this article shall be exempt from any of the provisions of the Certificate of Public Need laws and regulations of the Commonwealth.
E. No authority created pursuant to this article shall be allowed to issue bonds or other form of indebtedness.
F. Any authority created pursuant to this article shall report on programmatic initiatives on an annual basis to the Joint Commission on Health Care.
2001, c. 671; 2003, cc. 63, 70.