A. As a routine component of every pregnant woman’s prenatal care, every practitioner licensed pursuant to this subtitle who renders prenatal care, including any holder of a multistate licensure privilege to practice nursing, regardless of the site of such practice, shall establish and implement a medical history protocol for screening pregnant women for substance abuse to determine the need for a specific substance abuse evaluation. The medical history protocol shall include, but need not be limited to, a description of the screening device and shall address abuse of both legal and illegal substances. The medical history screening may be followed, as necessary and appropriate, with a thorough substance abuse evaluation.
B. The results of such medical history screening and of any specific substance abuse evaluation which may be conducted shall be confidential and, if the woman is enrolled in a treatment program operated by any facility receiving federal funds, shall only be released as provided in federal law and regulations. However, if the woman is not enrolled in a treatment program or is not enrolled in a program operated by a facility receiving federal funds, the results may only be released to the following persons:
C. The results of the medical history screening required by this section or any specific substance abuse evaluation which may be conducted as part of the prenatal care shall not be admissible in any criminal proceeding.
D. Practitioners shall advise their patients of the results of the medical history screening and specific substance abuse evaluation, and shall provide such information to third-party payers as may be required for reimbursement of the costs of medical care. However, such information shall not be admissible in any criminal proceedings. Practitioners shall advise all pregnant women whose medical history screenings and specific substance abuse evaluations are positive for substance abuse of appropriate treatment and shall inform such women of the potential for poor birth outcomes from substance abuse.
1992, c. 428; 2004, c. 49.