Law:Title 9. Safety. Subtitle B. Emergencies from Chapter 773. Emergency Medical Services (Texas)

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Subtitle B. Emergencies

Contents

Chapter 773. Emergency Medical Services

Subchapter A. General Provisions

Section 773.001.  Short Title.

This chapter may be cited as the Emergency Health Care Act.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 299, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2005.



Section  773.002.  Purpose.

The purpose of this chapter is to provide for the prompt and efficient transportation of sick and injured patients, after necessary stabilization, and to encourage public access to that transportation in each area of the state.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  773.003.  Definitions.

In this chapter:

(1)  "Advanced life support" means emergency prehospital care that uses invasive medical acts.

(2)  "Basic life support" means emergency prehospital care that uses noninvasive medical acts.

(3)  "Board" means the Texas Board of Health.

(4)  "Bureau" means the department's bureau of emergency management.

(5)  "Bureau chief" means the chief of the bureau of emergency management.

(6)  "Commissioner" means the commissioner of health.

(7)  "Department" means the Department of State Health Services.

(8)  "Emergency medical services" means services used to respond to an individual's perceived need for immediate medical care and to prevent death or aggravation of physiological or psychological illness or injury.

(9)  "Emergency medical services and trauma care system" means an arrangement of available resources that are coordinated for the effective delivery of emergency health care services in geographical regions consistent with planning and management standards.

(10)  "Emergency medical services personnel" means:

(A)  emergency care attendant;

(B)  emergency medical technicians;

(C)  emergency medical technicians--intermediate;

(D)  emergency medical technicians--paramedic; or

(E)  licensed paramedic.

(11)  "Emergency medical services provider" means a person who uses or maintains emergency medical services vehicles, medical equipment, and emergency medical services personnel to provide emergency medical services.

(12)  "Emergency medical services vehicle" means:

(A)  a basic life-support emergency medical services vehicle;

(B)  an advanced life-support emergency medical services vehicle;

(C)  a mobile intensive-care unit; or

(D)  a specialized emergency medical services vehicle.

(13)  "Emergency medical services volunteer" means emergency medical services personnel who provide emergency prehospital care without remuneration, except reimbursement for expenses.

(14)  "Emergency medical services volunteer provider" means an emergency medical services provider that has at least 75 percent of its total personnel as volunteers and is recognized as a Section 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation by the Internal Revenue Service.

(15)  "Emergency prehospital care" means care provided to the sick or injured before or during transportation to a medical facility, and includes any necessary stabilization of the sick or injured in connection with that transportation.

(15-a)  "Executive commissioner" means the executive commissioner of the Health and Human Services Commission.

(16)  "First responder organization" means a group or association of certified emergency medical services personnel that, working in cooperation with a licensed emergency medical services provider, provides immediate on-scene care to ill or injured persons but does not transport those persons.

(17)  "Governmental entity" means a county, municipality, school district, or special district or authority created in accordance with the Texas Constitution.

(18)  "Medical supervision" means direction given to emergency medical services personnel by a licensed physician under Subtitle B, Title 3, Occupations Code, and the rules adopted under that subtitle by the Texas State Board of Medical Examiners.

 

Text of subsec. (19) as amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 1

 

(19)  "Trauma facility" means a health care facility that is capable of comprehensive treatment of seriously injured persons and is a part of an emergency medical services and trauma care system.

 

Text of subsec. (19) as amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 853, Sec. 3

 

(19)  "Emergency medical care" means bona fide emergency services provided after the sudden onset of a medical or traumatic condition manifesting itself by acute symptoms of sufficient severity, including severe pain, such that the absence of immediate medical attention could reasonably be expected to result in:

(A)  placing the patient's health in serious jeopardy;

(B)  serious impairment to bodily functions; or

(C)  serious dysfunction of any bodily organ or part.

(20)  "Trauma patient" means a critically injured person who has been:

(A)  evaluated by a physician, a registered nurse, or emergency medical services personnel; and

(B)  found to require medical care in a trauma facility.

(21)  [Blank].

(22)  "Trauma services" includes services provided to a severely or seriously injured patient who has a principal diagnosis listed in the Injuries and Poisonings Chapter of the International Classification of Diseases, Clinical Modification.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 239, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 853, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 28, 1995; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 435, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1997; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1377, Sec. 2.02, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1420, Sec. 14.808, eff. Sept. 1, 2001.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 299, Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2005.



Section  773.004.  Vehicles And Personnel Excluded From Chapter.

(a) This chapter does not apply to:

(1)   air transfer that does not advertise as an ambulance service and that is not licensed by the department;

(2)  the use of ground or air transfer vehicles to transport sick or injured persons in a casualty situation that exceeds the basic vehicular capacity or capability of emergency medical services providers in the area;

(3)  an industrial ambulance; or

(4)  a physician, registered nurse, or other health care practitioner licensed by this state unless the health care practitioner staffs an emergency medical services vehicle regularly.

(b)  In this section, "industrial ambulance" means a vehicle owned and operated by an industrial facility that is not available for hire or use by the public except to assist the local community in a disaster or when existing ambulance service is not available, and includes a ground vehicle at an industrial site used:

(1)  for the initial transportation or transfer of the unstable urgently sick or injured; or

(2)  to transport from the job site to an appropriate medical facility a person who becomes sick, injured, wounded, or otherwise incapacitated in the course of employment.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 240, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 376, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1993.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 305, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2005.

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1034, Sec. 4, eff. September 1, 2005.

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 268, Sec. 14(a), eff. September 1, 2007.



Section  773.0045.  Temporary Exemptions For Emergency Medical Services Personnel Practicing In Rural Area.

(a) In this section, "rural area" means:

(1)  a county with a population of 50,000 or less; or

(2)  a relatively large, isolated, and sparsely populated area in a county with a population of more than 50,000.

(b)  The department on a case-by-case basis may temporarily exempt emergency medical services personnel who primarily practice in a rural area from a requirement imposed either by Section 773.050 or 773.055 or by a rule adopted by the department under Section 773.050 or 773.055 if specific circumstances that affect the rural area served by the emergency medical services personnel justify the exemption. The department may temporarily exempt the emergency medical services personnel from a requirement imposed:

(1)  by a department rule adopted under Section 773.050 or 773.055 only if the department finds that, under the circumstances, imposing the requirement would not be in the best interests of the people in the rural area who are served by the emergency medical services personnel; and

(2)  by Section 773.050 or 773.055 only if the department finds that, under the circumstances, there is a substantial risk that imposing the requirement will detrimentally affect the health or safety of one or more persons in the affected rural area or hinder the ability of emergency medical services personnel who practice in the area to alleviate a threat to the health or safety of one or more persons in the area.

(c)  The exemption must be in writing, include the findings required by Subsection (b), and expire at a stated time. The written findings must be accompanied by a concise and explicit statement that specifically describes the circumstances that support the finding.

(d)  In granting the exemption, the department in writing must require the affected emergency medical services personnel or the appropriate emergency medical services provider to adopt a written plan under which the applicable requirement will be met as soon as possible.

(e)  A temporary exemption under this section may allow emergency medical services personnel who are applicants for certification at a higher level of training to temporarily practice at the higher level.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 848, Sec. 1, eff. June 20, 2003.



Section  773.005.  Bureau Of Emergency Management.

(a) The bureau of emergency management is in the department under the direction of a bureau chief.

(b)  The bureau chief must have:

(1)  proven ability as an administrator and organizer; and

(2)  direct experience in emergency medical services.

(c)  In filling the position of bureau chief, the department shall give preference to a physician who applies for the position.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  773.006.  Fund For Emergency Medical Services, Trauma Facilities, And Trauma Care Systems. (a)

The fund for emergency medical services, trauma facilities, and trauma care systems is established as an account in the general revenue fund. Money in the account may be appropriated only to the bureau for the purposes specified by Section 773.122.

(b)  The account is composed of money deposited to the account under Article 102.0185, Code of Criminal Procedure, and the earnings of the account.

(c)  Sections 403.095 and 404.071, Government Code, do not apply to the account.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1213, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  773.007.  Supervision Of Emergency Prehospital Care.

(a) The provision of advanced life support must be under medical supervision and a licensed physician's control.

(b)  The provision of basic life support may be under medical supervision and a licensed physician's control.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  773.008.  Consent For Emergency Care.

Consent for emergency care of an individual is not required if:

(1)  the individual is:

(A)  unable to communicate because of an injury, accident, or illness or is unconscious; and

(B)  suffering from what reasonably appears to be a life-threatening injury or illness;

(2)  a court of record orders the treatment of an individual who is in an imminent emergency to prevent the individual's serious bodily injury or loss of life; or

(3)  the individual is a minor who is suffering from what reasonably appears to be a life-threatening injury or illness and whose parents, managing or possessory conservator, or guardian is not present.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  773.009.  Limitation On Civil Liability.

A person who authorizes, sponsors, supports, finances, or supervises the functions of emergency room personnel and emergency medical services personnel is not liable for civil damages for an act or omission connected with training emergency medical services personnel or with services or treatment given to a patient or potential patient by emergency medical services personnel if the training, services, or treatment is performed in accordance with the standard of ordinary care.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  773.011.  Subscription Programs.

(a) An emergency medical services provider may create and operate a subscription program to fund and provide emergency medical services.

(b)  The board shall adopt rules establishing minimum standards for the creation and operation of a subscription program.

(c)  The board shall adopt a rule that requires an emergency medical services provider to secure a surety bond in the amount of sums to be subscribed before soliciting subscriptions and creating and operating a subscription program. The surety bond must be issued by a company that is licensed by or eligible to do business in this state.

(d)  The board may adopt rules for waiver of the surety bond.

(e)  The Insurance Code does not apply to a subscription program established under this section.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 242, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 2, eff. Aug. 28, 1995.



Section  773.012.  Advisory Council.

(a) The governor shall appoint an advisory council to advise the board regarding matters related to the responsibilities of the board, commissioner, and department under this chapter. In making appointments to the advisory council, the governor shall ensure that approximately one-half of the members of the advisory council are residents of rural areas of the state.

(b)  The advisory council is composed of the following 15 members appointed by the governor:

(1)  a board-certified emergency physician, appointed from a list of names recommended by a statewide professional association of emergency physicians;

(2)  a licensed physician who is an emergency medical services medical director, appointed from a list of names recommended by a statewide professional association of emergency medical services medical directors;

(3)  a fire chief for a municipality that provides emergency medical services, appointed from a list of names recommended by a statewide fire chiefs association;

(4)  an officer or employee of a private provider of emergency medical services who is involved with the development of a Texas Trauma System, appointed from a list of names recommended by a statewide association of private providers of emergency medical services;

(5)  a volunteer who provides emergency medical services, appointed from a list of names recommended by a statewide association of volunteers;

(6)  an educator in the field of emergency medical services;

(7)  a member of an emergency medical services air medical team or unit, appointed from a list of names recommended by a statewide emergency medical services air medical association;

(8)  a representative of a fire department that provides emergency medical services, appointed from a list of names recommended by a statewide association of firefighters;

(9)  a representative of hospitals who is affiliated with a hospital that is a designated trauma facility in an urban community, appointed from a list of names recommended by a statewide association of hospitals;

(10)  a representative of hospitals, who is affiliated with a hospital that is a designated trauma facility in a rural community, appointed from a list of names recommended by a statewide association of hospitals;

(11)  a representative of a county provider of emergency medical services;

(12)  one licensed physician who is a pediatrician with trauma or emergency care expertise;

(13)  one trauma surgeon or one registered nurse with trauma expertise; and

(14)  two representatives of the general public who are not qualified to serve under another subdivision of this subsection.

(c)  A person may not be a public member of the advisory council if the person or the person's spouse:

(1)  is registered, certified, or licensed by a regulatory agency in the field of emergency medical services;

(2)  is employed by or participates in the management of a business entity or other organization regulated by or receiving money from the department;

(3)  owns or controls, directly or indirectly, more than a 10 percent interest in a business entity or other organization regulated by or receiving money from the department; or

(4)  uses or receives a substantial amount of tangible goods, services, or money from the department other than reimbursement authorized by law for advisory council membership, attendance, or expenses.

(d)  In this subsection, "Texas trade association" means a cooperative and voluntarily joined association of business or professional competitors in this state designed to assist its members and its industry or profession in dealing with mutual business or professional problems and in promoting their common interest. A person may not be a member of the advisory council if:

(1)  the person is an officer, employee, or paid consultant of a Texas trade association in the field of emergency medical services; or

(2)  the person's spouse is an officer, manager, or paid consultant of a Texas trade association in the field of emergency medical services.

(e)  A person may not be a member of the advisory council if the person is required to register as a lobbyist under Chapter 305, Government Code, because of the person's activities for compensation on behalf of a profession related to the operation of the department.

(f)  Members of the advisory council serve staggered six-year terms with the terms of five members expiring January 1 of each even-numbered year. A vacancy on the advisory council is filled in the same manner as the original appointment for the unexpired term.

(g)  The governor shall appoint the presiding officer of the advisory council.

(h)  A member of the advisory council serves without compensation. Chapter 2110, Government Code, does not apply to the size, composition, or duration of the advisory council.

(i)  The advisory council shall meet at least quarterly in the city of Austin. The advisory council shall meet as provided by procedural rules adopted by the advisory council or at the call of the presiding officer. The advisory council may appoint committees it considers necessary to perform its duties.

(j)  The advisory council periodically shall review board rules relating to this chapter and may recommend changes in those rules to the board. The board and the commissioner shall ensure that the advisory council is given adequate time and opportunity to review and comment on each rule proposed for adoption by the board under this chapter, including the amendment or repeal of an existing rule, but not including an emergency rule.

(k)  The advisory council shall assess the need for emergency medical services in the rural areas of the state.

(l)  The advisory council shall develop a strategic plan for:

(1)  refining the educational requirements for certification and maintaining certification as emergency medical services personnel; and

(2)  developing emergency medical services and trauma care systems.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1411, Sec. 19.01, eff. Sept. 1, 1999. Amended by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 874, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 2001.



Section  773.013.  Peer Assistance Program.

The department may establish, approve, and fund a peer assistance program in accordance with Section 467.003 and board rules.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 874, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 2001.



Section  773.014.  Administration Of Epinephrine.

(a) An emergency medical services provider and a first responder organization may acquire and possess epinephrine auto-injector devices in accordance with this section.  Emergency medical services personnel may carry and administer epinephrine auto-injector devices in accordance with this section.

(b)  The department shall adopt rules designed to protect the public health and safety to implement this section.  The rules must provide that emergency medical services personnel may administer an epinephrine auto-injector device to another only if the person has successfully completed a training course, approved by the department, in the use of the device that is consistent with the national standard training curriculum for emergency medical technicians.

(c)  An emergency medical services provider or first responder organization may acquire, possess, maintain, and dispose of epinephrine auto-injector devices, and emergency medical services personnel may carry, maintain, administer, and dispose of epinephrine auto-injector devices, only in accordance with:

(1)  rules adopted by the department under this section; and

(2)  a delegated practice agreement that provides for medical supervision by a licensed physician who either:

(A)  acts as a medical director for an emergency medical services system or a licensed hospital; or

(B)  has knowledge and experience in the delivery of emergency care.

(c-1)  A licensed physician acting as a medical director for an emergency medical services system may restrict the use and administration of epinephrine auto-injector devices to certain emergency medical services personnel of the system through:

(1)  the delegated practice agreement; or

(2)  the adoption of policies governing the use of the devices by personnel within the system.

(d)  Emergency medical services personnel who administer epinephrine auto-injector devices to others shall immediately report the use to the physician supervising the activities of the emergency medical services personnel.

(e)  The administration of an epinephrine auto-injector device to another under this section is considered to be the administration of emergency care for the purposes of any statute relating to liability for the provision of emergency care. The administration of an epinephrine auto-injector device to another in accordance with the requirements of this section does not constitute the unlawful practice of any health care profession.

(f)  A person otherwise authorized to sell or provide an epinephrine auto-injector device to another may sell or provide the devices to an emergency medical services provider or a first responder organization authorized to acquire and possess the devices under this section.

(g)  This section does not prevent emergency medical services personnel who are also licensed health care professionals under another health care licensing law and who are authorized to acquire, possess, and administer an epinephrine auto-injector device under the other health care licensing law from acting under the other law.

(h)  This section does not impose a standard of care not otherwise required by law.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 874, Sec. 4, eff. Jan. 1, 2002; Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1131, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 2002.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1079, Sec. 1, eff. June 15, 2007.



Section 773.015.  Identification Of Certain Patients Receiving Emergency Prehospital Care.

Emergency medical services personnel or emergency room medical or admissions personnel may take the thumbprint of a person who receives emergency prehospital care if the person:

(1)  does not possess personal identification at the time the care is administered;

(2)  is unconscious;

(3)  is transported across the Texas-Mexico border by ambulance or helicopter while receiving emergency prehospital care; and

(4)  is delivered to a hospital that has digital fingerprinting capabilities.

Added by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 517, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2005.



Subchapter B. State Plan For Emergency Services

Section  773.021.  State Plan.

(a) The bureau shall develop a state plan for the prompt and efficient delivery of adequate emergency medical services to acutely sick or injured persons.

(b)  The state plan must include an emergency radio communication plan to be used by local governments and districts that provide emergency medical services to develop an emergency radio communication network linking emergency medical services providers with local hospitals or trauma centers.

(c)  The advisory council shall consider the bureau's actions under Subsection (a), and the board shall review the council's recommendations.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 488, Sec. 1, eff. June 12, 1995.



Section  773.022.  Service Delivery Areas.

The bureau shall divide the state into emergency medical services delivery areas that coincide, to the extent possible, with other regional planning areas.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  773.023.  Area Plans.

(a) The bureau shall:

(1)  identify all public or private agencies and institutions that are used or may be used for emergency medical services in each delivery area; and

(2)  enlist the cooperation of all concerned agencies and institutions in developing a well-coordinated plan for delivering emergency medical services in each delivery area.

(b)  A delivery area plan must include an interagency communications network that facilitates prompt and coordinated response to medical emergencies by the Department of Public Safety, local police departments, ambulance personnel, medical facilities, and other concerned agencies and institutions.

(c)  A delivery area plan may include the use of helicopters that may be available from the Department of Public Safety, the National Guard, or the United States Armed Forces.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  773.024.  Federal Programs.

The bureau is the state agency designated to develop state plans required for participation in federal programs involving emergency medical services. The bureau may receive and disburse available federal funds to implement the service programs.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  773.025.  Accessibility Of Training.

(a) The bureau shall identify all individuals and public or private agencies and institutions that are or may be engaged in emergency medical services training in each delivery area.

(b)  A delivery area plan must include provisions for encouraging emergency medical services training so as to reduce the cost of training to emergency medical services providers and to make training more accessible to low population or remote areas.

(c)  A governmental entity that sponsors or wishes to sponsor an emergency medical services provider may request the bureau to provide emergency medical services training for emergency care attendants at times and places that are convenient for the provider's personnel, if the training is not available locally.

(d)  A governmental entity or nongovernmental organization that sponsors or wishes to sponsor an emergency medical services provider or first responder organization in a rural or underserved area may request the bureau to provide or facilitate the provision of initial training for emergency care attendants, if the training is not available locally. The bureau shall ensure that the training is provided. The bureau shall provide the training without charge, or contract with qualified instructors to provide the training without charge, to students who agree to perform emergency care attendant services for at least one year with the local emergency medical services provider or first responder organization. The training must be provided at times and places that are convenient to the students. The bureau shall require that at least three students are scheduled to take any class offered under this subsection.

(e)  To facilitate all levels of emergency medical services training, the bureau shall consult with and solicit comment from emergency medical services providers, first responder organizations, persons who provide emergency medical services training, and other entities interested in emergency medical services training programs.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 874, Sec. 5, eff. Sept. 1, 2001.



Subchapter C. Licenses, Certification, And Qualifications

Section  773.041.  License Or Certificate Required.

(a) A person may not operate, conduct, or maintain an emergency medical service, advertise that the person is an emergency medical services provider, or otherwise engage in or profess to be engaged in the provision of emergency medical services unless the person holds a license as an emergency medical services provider issued by the department in accordance with this chapter.

(a-1)  A person may not transport a patient by stretcher in a vehicle unless the person holds a license as an emergency medical services provider issued by the department in accordance with this chapter.  For purposes of this subsection, "person" means an individual, corporation, organization, government, governmental subdivision or agency, business, trust, partnership, association, or any other legal entity.

(b)  A person may not practice as any type of emergency medical services personnel unless the person is certified under this chapter and rules adopted under this chapter.

(c)  A certificate or license issued under this chapter is not transferable.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 244, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 268, Sec. 14(b), eff. September 1, 2007.



Section 773.0415.  Limitation On Information Required For Certificate Renewal.

The requirements and procedures adopted by the department for the renewal of a certificate to practice as emergency medical services personnel issued under this chapter:

(1)  may not require an applicant to provide unchanged criminal history information already included in one or more of the applicant's previous applications for certification or for certificate renewal filed with the department; and

(2)  may require the applicant to provide only information relevant to the period occurring since the date of the applicant's last application for certification or for certificate renewal, as applicable, including information relevant to any new requirement applicable to the certificate held by the applicant.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 332, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section 773.042.  Basic Life-support Emergency Medical Services Provider Qualifications.

A provider qualifies as a basic life-support emergency medical services provider if it provides a vehicle that is designed for transporting the sick or injured, has personnel and sufficient equipment and supplies for providing basic life support, and is capable of providing emergency and nonemergency transportation.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 3, eff. Aug. 28, 1995.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 305, Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2005.

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1034, Sec. 5, eff. September 1, 2005.



Section  773.043.  Advanced Life-support Emergency Medical Services Provider Qualifications.

A provider qualifies as an advanced life-support emergency medical services provider if it:

(1)  meets the requirements of a basic life-support emergency medical services provider; and

(2)  has personnel and sufficient equipment and supplies for providing intravenous therapy and endotracheal or esophageal intubation.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 4, eff. Aug. 28, 1995.



Section  773.044.  Mobile Intensive-care Provider Qualifications.

A provider qualifies as a mobile intensive-care provider if it:

(1)  meets the requirements of an advanced life-support emergency medical services provider; and

(2)  has personnel and sufficient equipment and supplies to provide cardiac monitoring, defibrillation, cardioversion, drug therapy, and two-way radio communication.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 5, eff. Aug. 28, 1995.



Section  773.045.  Specialized Emergency Medical Services Provider Qualifications.

(a) A provider using a vehicle, including a helicopter, boat, fixed-wing aircraft, or ground vehicle, qualifies as a specialized emergency medical services provider if:

(1)  the vehicle is designed for transporting the sick or injured by air, water, or ground transportation; and

(2)  the provider has personnel and sufficient equipment and supplies to provide for the specialized needs of the patient transported.

(b)  A rotor or fixed-wing aircraft and staff based in this state and used to transport a patient by stretcher and that holds itself out as an air ambulance service is required to be licensed by the department.

(c)  An air ambulance company based in another state that transports patients from a point in this state is required to be licensed by the department as an emergency medical services provider. The department shall issue a license to an air ambulance company under this subsection if the company applies as required by this chapter and has met the department's qualifications for safely transporting patients. An air ambulance company accredited by the Committee on Air Ambulance Medical Services is rebuttably presumed to have met the department's qualifications.

(d)  An air ambulance company licensed under Subsection (c) must include information regarding the physical location of the company's base operations in any advertising by the company in this state. This subsection does not prohibit an air ambulance company with multiple locations from listing those locations in advertising, provided that the air ambulance company meets all the provisions of this chapter.

(e)  An air ambulance company that is not located in this state and that advertises within this state must have at least one physical location in this state.

(f)  This section does not require an air transportation provider to be licensed if, in addition to the company's normal air transportation service, the air transportation company provides only voluntary, mercy-flight transportation at the company's own expense.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 245, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 376, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1993; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 6, eff. Aug. 28, 1995; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1182, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.



Section  773.046.  Emergency Care Attendant Qualifications.

(a) An individual qualifies as an emergency care attendant if the individual is certified by the department as minimally proficient to provide emergency prehospital care by providing initial aid that promotes comfort and avoids aggravation of an injury or illness.

(b)  The department may not require an individual to have a high school diploma or a high school equivalency certificate for certification as an emergency care attendant under this chapter if the individual certifies that the individual will serve only as an emergency care attendant volunteer during the certification period.

(c)  The board shall adopt rules as necessary to administer this section.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 246, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1035, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  773.047.  Emergency Medical Technician Qualifications.

An individual qualifies as an emergency medical technician if the individual is certified by the department as minimally proficient to perform emergency prehospital care that is necessary for basic life support and that includes cardiopulmonary resuscitation and the control of hemorrhaging.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 247, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  773.048.  Emergency Medical Technician--intermediate Qualifications.

An individual qualifies as an emergency medical technician-intermediate if the individual is certified by the department as minimally proficient to provide emergency prehospital care by initiating under medical supervision certain procedures, including intravenous therapy and endotracheal or esophageal intubation.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 248, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  773.049.  Emergency Medical Technician--paramedic Qualifications.

An individual qualifies as an emergency medical technician-paramedic if the individual is certified by the department as minimally proficient to provide advanced life support that includes initiation under medical supervision of certain procedures, including intravenous therapy, endotracheal or esophageal intubation, electrical cardiac defibrillation or cardioversion, and drug therapy.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 249, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  773.0495.  Licensed Paramedic Qualifications.

An individual qualifies as a licensed paramedic if the department determines that the individual is minimally proficient to provide advanced life support that includes initiation under medical supervision of certain procedures, including intravenous therapy, endotracheal or esophageal intubation, electrical cardiac defibrillation or cardioversion, and drug therapy. In addition, a licensed paramedic must complete a curriculum that includes college-level course work in accordance with rules adopted by the board.

Added by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 435, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.



Section  773.050.  Minimum Standards.

(a) Each basic life-support emergency medical services vehicle when in service must be staffed by at least two individuals certified as emergency care attendants or certified at a higher level of training.

(b)  The executive commissioner by rule shall establish minimum standards for:

(1)  staffing an advanced life-support emergency medical services vehicle, a mobile intensive-care unit, or a specialized emergency medical services vehicle;

(2)  emergency medical services personnel certification and performance, including provisional certification, certification, decertification, recertification, suspension, emergency suspension, and probation;

(3)  the approval of courses and training programs, the certification of program instructors, examiners, and course coordinators for emergency medical services personnel training, and the revocation and probation of an approval or certification;

(4)  examinations of emergency medical services personnel;

(5)  medical supervision of basic and advanced life-support systems;

(6)  granting, suspending, and revoking a license for emergency medical services providers;  and

(7)  emergency medical services vehicles.

(c)  The executive commissioner shall consider the education, training, criminal background, and experience of allied health professionals in adopting the minimum standards for emergency medical services personnel certification and may establish criteria for interstate reciprocity of emergency medical services personnel.  Each out-of-state application for certification must be accompanied by a nonrefundable fee of not more than $120.  The executive commissioner may also establish criteria for out-of-country emergency medical services personnel certification.  Each out-of-country application for certification must be accompanied by a nonrefundable fee of not more than $180.

(d)  The executive commissioner may not adopt a rule that requires any system, service, or agency to provide advanced life-support or staffing beyond basic life-support levels except for providers of:

(1)  advanced life-support emergency medical services;

(2)  mobile intensive care;  or

(3)  specialized emergency medical services.

(e)  The executive commissioner shall adopt minimum standards for recognition of first responder organizations.

(f)  The executive commissioner shall recognize, prepare, or administer continuing education programs for certified personnel.  A certificate holder must participate in the programs to the extent required by the executive commissioner to remain certified.

(g)  Rules adopting minimum standards under this section shall require:

(1)  an emergency medical services vehicle to be equipped with an epinephrine auto-injector device or similar device to treat anaphylaxis; and

(2)  emergency medical services personnel to complete continuing education training in the administration of anaphylaxis treatment.

(h)  The department may provide a prescreening criminal history record check for an emergency medical services personnel applicant to determine the applicant's eligibility to receive certification before enrollment in the educational and training requirements mandated by the executive commissioner. The department may charge a reasonable fee for the costs associated with prescreening to each applicant who requests prescreening.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 250, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 251, Sec. 1, eff. May 23, 1993; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 7, eff. Aug. 28, 1995; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1411, Sec. 19.02, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.84(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1079, Sec. 2, eff. June 15, 2007.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1149, Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  773.0505.  Rules Regarding Advertising Or Competitive Bidding.

(a) The board may not adopt rules restricting advertising or competitive bidding by a license or certificate holder except to prohibit false, misleading, or deceptive practices.

(b)  In its rules to prohibit false, misleading, or deceptive practices, the board may not include a rule that:

(1)  restricts the use of any medium for advertising;

(2)  restricts the use of a license or certificate holder's personal appearance or voice in an advertisement;

(3)  relates to the size or duration of an advertisement by the license or certificate holder; or

(4)  restricts the license or certificate holder's advertisement under a trade name.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1411, Sec. 19.03, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  773.051.  Municipal Regulation.

A municipality may establish standards for an emergency medical services provider that are stricter than the minimum standards of this chapter and department rules adopted under this chapter.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 8, eff. Aug. 28, 1995.



Section  773.052.  Variances.

(a) An emergency medical services provider with a specific hardship may apply to the bureau chief for a variance from a rule adopted under this chapter. The board may adopt a fee of not more than $30 for filing an application for a variance.

(b)  On receipt of a request for a variance, the department shall consider any relevant factors, including:

(1)  the nearest available service;

(2)  geography; and

(3)  demography.

(c)  The bureau chief shall grant to a sole provider for a service area a variance from the minimum standards for staffing and equipment for the provision of basic life-support emergency medical services if the provider is an emergency medical services provider exempt from the payment of fees under Section 773.0581.

(d)  An applicant for a variance under Subsection (c) must submit a letter to the department from the commissioners court of the county or the governing body of the municipality in which the provider intends to operate an emergency medical services vehicle. The letter must state that there is no other emergency medical services provider in the service area.

(e)  The department shall grant a variance under Subsection (c) if the department determines that the provider qualifies and may deny the variance if the department determines that the provider does not qualify. The department shall give a provider whose application is denied the opportunity for a contested case hearing under Chapter 2001, Government Code.

(f)  The department shall issue an emergency medical services license to a provider granted a variance under this section. The license is subject to annual review by the department. A provider is encouraged to upgrade staffing and equipment to meet the minimum standards set by the rules adopted under this chapter.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 251, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 5.95(49), eff. Sept. 1, 1995; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.84(b), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  773.054.  Applications For Personnel Certification And Training Program Approval.

(a) This section applies to an application for:

(1)  examination for certification of emergency medical services personnel;

(2)  approval of a course or training program; or

(3)  certification of a program instructor, examiner, or course coordinator.

(b)  Each application must be made to the department on a form prescribed by the board and under rules adopted by the board.

(c)  Each application under Subsection (a)(3) must be accompanied by a nonrefundable fee of not more than $30 for a program instructor or examiner or $60 for a course coordinator. The department may not require a fee for a certification from an instructor, examiner, or coordinator who does not receive compensation for providing services.

(d)  Each application under Subsection (a)(2) must be accompanied by a nonrefundable fee of not more than $30 for a basic course or training program or $60 for an advanced course or training program. The department may not require a fee for approval of a course or training program if the course coordinator or sponsoring agency does not receive compensation for providing the course or training program.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 253, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 9, eff. Aug. 28, 1995; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.84(c), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  773.055.  Certification Of Emergency Medical Services Personnel.

(a) A nonrefundable fee must accompany each application for emergency medical services personnel certification. The fee may not exceed:

(1)  $90 for an emergency medical technician-paramedic or emergency medical technician-intermediate;

(2)  $60 for an emergency medical technician or emergency care attendant;

(3)  $90 for recertification of an emergency medical technician-paramedic or emergency medical technician-intermediate;

(4)  $60 for recertification of an emergency medical technician or emergency care attendant; or

(5)  $120 for certification or recertification of a licensed paramedic.

(b)  Except as provided by Subsection (c), the department shall notify each examinee of the results of an examination for certification not later than the 30th day after the date on which the examination is administered.

(c)  The department shall notify an examinee of the results of an examination not later than the 14th day after the date on which the department receives the results if the examination is graded or reviewed by a national testing service. If the notice of the examination results will be delayed longer than 90 days after the examination date, the department shall notify each examinee of the reason for the delay before the 90th day.

(d)  The department shall furnish a person who fails an examination for certification with an analysis of the person's performance on the examination if requested in writing by that person. The board may adopt rules to allow a person who fails the examination to retake all or part of the examination. A fee of not more than $30 must accompany each application for reexamination.

(e)  The department shall issue certificates to emergency medical services personnel who meet the minimum standards for personnel certification adopted under Section 773.050. A certificate is valid for four years from the date of issuance. The department shall charge a fee of not more than $10 to replace a lost certificate.

(f)  A fee required by this section is the obligation of the applicant but may be paid by the emergency medical services provider. If an applicant is required to be certified as a condition of employment, the emergency medical services provider shall pay for all fees required by this section, except for a fee to replace a lost certificate, in addition to any other compensation paid to that applicant if the provider is a municipality. A municipality that requires a fire fighter to be certified as emergency medical services personnel shall pay the fees required by this section.

(g)  The board by rule may adopt a system under which certificates expire on various dates during the year. For the year in which the certificate expiration date is changed, the department shall prorate certificate fees on a monthly basis so that each certificate holder pays only that portion of the certificate fee that is allocable to the number of months during which the certificate is valid. On renewal of the certificate on the new expiration date, the total certificate renewal fee is payable.

(h)  The department shall ensure that the written examinations and any other tests that the department requires a person to take and pass to obtain or retain certification as emergency medical services personnel shall be administered during the course of a year at various locations around the state so that a person who resides in any part of the state will be able to take the examinations or tests without having to travel a distance that as a practical matter requires either travel by air or an overnight stay.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 254, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 251, Sec. 2, eff. May 23, 1993; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 10, eff. Aug. 28, 1995; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 435, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1997; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1411, Sec. 19.04, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.84(d), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  773.056.  Approval Of Training Programs; Certification Of Instructors, Examiners, And Coordinators. (a)

The department shall approve each course or training program that meets the minimum standards adopted under Section 773.050.

(b)  The department shall issue a certificate to each program instructor, examiner, or course coordinator who meets the minimum standards adopted under Section 773.050. The certificate is valid for two years. The department shall charge a fee of not more than $10 to replace a lost or stolen certificate.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 255, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 11, eff. Aug. 28, 1995; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.84(e), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  773.057.  Emergency Medical Services Providers License.

(a) An emergency medical services provider must submit an application for a license in accordance with procedures prescribed by the board.

(b)  A nonrefundable application and vehicle fee determined by the board must accompany each application. The application fee may not exceed $500 for each application and the vehicle fee may not exceed $180 for each emergency medical services vehicle operated by the provider.

(c)  The department may delegate vehicle inspections to the commissioners court of a county or the governing body of a municipality. The delegation must be made:

(1)  at the request of the commissioners court or governing body; and

(2)  in accordance with criteria and procedures adopted by the board.

(d)  The commissioners court of a county or governing body of a municipality that conducts inspections under Subsection (c) shall collect and retain the fee for vehicles it inspects.

(e)  In addition to any other qualifications that an emergency medical services provider must possess to obtain the type of license sought, all emergency medical services providers must possess the qualifications required for a basic emergency medical services provider under Section 773.042.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 256, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 12, eff. Aug. 28, 1995; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.84(f), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 305, Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2005.

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1034, Sec. 6, eff. September 1, 2005.



Section  773.0571.  Requirements For Provider License.

The department shall issue to an emergency medical services provider a license that is valid for two years if the department is satisfied that:

(1)  the emergency medical services provider has adequate staff to meet the staffing standards prescribed by this chapter and the rules adopted under this chapter;

(2)  each emergency medical services vehicle is adequately constructed, equipped, maintained, and operated to render basic or advanced life support services safely and efficiently;

(3)  the emergency medical services provider offers safe and efficient services for emergency prehospital care and transportation of patients; and

(4)  the emergency medical services provider complies with the rules adopted by the board under this chapter.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 257, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 13, eff. Aug. 28, 1995.



Section  773.0572.  Provisional Licenses.

The board by rule shall establish conditions under which an emergency medical services provider who fails to meet the minimum standards prescribed by this chapter may be issued a provisional license. The department may issue a provisional license to an emergency medical services provider under this chapter if the department finds that issuing the license would serve the public interest and that the provider meets the requirements of the rules adopted under this section. A nonrefundable fee of not more than $30 must accompany each application for a provisional license.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 258, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 14, eff. Aug. 28, 1995; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.84(g), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  773.058.  Volunteers Exempt From Fees.

An individual who is an emergency medical services volunteer is exempt from the payment of fees under Section 773.055 if the individual does not receive compensation for providing emergency medical services. If an individual accepts compensation during the certification period, the individual shall pay to the department a prorated application fee for the duration of the certification period. In this section, "compensation" does not include reimbursement for actual expenses for medical supplies, gasoline, clothing, meals, and insurance incurred in providing emergency medical services.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 259, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 5, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  773.0581.  Providers Exempt From Fees.

(a) An emergency medical services provider is exempt from the payment of fees under this subchapter if the provider uses emergency medical services volunteers exclusively to provide emergency prehospital care. However, an emergency medical services provider is not disqualified from the exemption if the provider compensates physicians who provide medical supervision and not more than five full-time staff or their equivalent.

(b)  This chapter does not prohibit an emergency medical services provider who uses volunteer emergency medical services personnel but has more than five paid staff from using the word "volunteer" in advertising if the organization is composed of at least 75 percent volunteer personnel.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 260, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  773.059.  Late Recertification.

(a) A person who is otherwise eligible to renew a certificate may renew an unexpired certificate by paying the required renewal fee to the department before the expiration date of the certificate. A person whose certificate has expired may not engage in activities that require certification until the certificate has been renewed.

(b)  A person whose certificate has been expired for 90 days or less may renew the certificate by paying to the department a renewal fee that is equal to 1-1/2 times the normally required renewal fee.

(c)  A person whose certificate has been expired for more than 90 days but less than one year may renew the certificate by paying to the department a renewal fee that is equal to two times the normally required renewal fee.

(d)  A person whose certificate has been expired for one year or more may not renew the certificate. The person may become certified by complying with the requirements and procedures, including the examination requirements, for an original certification.

(e)  A person who was certified in this state, moved to another state, and is currently certified or licensed and has been in practice in the other state for the two years preceding the date of application may become certified without reexamination. The person must pay to the department a fee that is equal to two times the normally required renewal fee for certification.

(f)  Not later than the 30th day before the date a person's certificate is scheduled to expire, the department shall send written notice of the impending expiration to the person at the person's last known address according to the records of the department.

(g)  A person certified by the department who is deployed in support of military, security, or other action by the United Nations Security Council, a national emergency declared by the president of the United States, or a declaration of war by the United States Congress is eligible for recertification under Section 773.050 on the person's demobilization for one calendar year after the date of demobilization.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 261, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 6, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 251, Sec. 3, eff. May 23, 1993; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1411, Sec. 19.05, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  773.060.  Disposition Of Funds.

(a) The department shall account for all fees and other funds it receives under this chapter.

(b)  The department shall deposit the fees and other funds in the state treasury to the credit of the bureau of emergency management fund. The fund may be used only to administer this chapter.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  773.061.  Disciplinary Actions.

(a) For a violation of this chapter or a rule adopted under this chapter, the department shall revoke, suspend, or refuse to renew a license or certificate of or shall reprimand:

(1)  emergency medical services personnel;

(2)  a program instructor, examiner, or course coordinator; and

(3)  an emergency medical services provider license holder.

(b)  For a violation of this chapter or a rule adopted under this chapter, the department shall revoke, suspend, or refuse to renew approval of a course or training program.

(c)  For a violation of this chapter or a rule adopted under this chapter, the department may place on emergency suspension emergency medical services personnel.

(d)  The department may place on probation a course or training program or a person, including emergency medical services personnel, an emergency medical services provider license holder, or a program instructor, examiner, or course coordinator, whose certificate, license, or approval is suspended. If a suspension is probated, the department may require the person or the sponsor of a course or training program, as applicable:

(1)  to report regularly to the department on matters that are the basis of the probation;

(2)  to limit practice to the areas prescribed by the board; or

(3)  to continue or review professional education until the person attains a degree of skill satisfactory to the department in those areas that are the basis of the probation.

(e)  Except as provided by Section 773.062, the procedures by which the department takes action under this section and the procedures by which that action is appealed are governed by the procedures for a contested case hearing under Chapter 2001, Government Code.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 262, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 5.95(49), eff. Sept. 1, 1995; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1411, Sec. 19.06, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  773.0611.  Inspections.

(a) The department or its representative may enter an emergency medical services vehicle or the premises of an emergency medical services provider's place of business at reasonable times to ensure compliance with this chapter and the rules adopted under this chapter.

(b)  The department or its representative may conduct an unannounced inspection of a vehicle or a place of business if the department has reasonable cause to believe that a person is in violation of this chapter or a rule adopted under this chapter.

(c)  The board shall adopt rules for unannounced inspections authorized under this section. The department or its representative shall perform unannounced inspections in accordance with those rules. An emergency medical services provider shall pay to the department a nonrefundable fee of not more than $30 if reinspection is necessary to determine compliance with this chapter and the rules adopted under this chapter.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 263, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 15, eff. Aug. 28, 1995; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.84(h), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  773.0612.  Access To Records.

(a) The department or its representative is entitled to access to records and other documents maintained by a person that are directly related to patient care or to emergency medical services personnel to the extent necessary to enforce this chapter and the rules adopted under this chapter. A person who holds a license or certification or an applicant for a certification or license is considered to have given consent to a representative of the department entering and inspecting a vehicle or place of business in accordance with this chapter.

(b)  A report, record, or working paper used or developed in an investigation under this section is confidential and may be used only for purposes consistent with the rules adopted by the board.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 264, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  773.0613.  Information Report To Department.

(a) An emergency medical services provider licensed under this chapter shall annually submit a report to the department containing information relating to the number and types of runs the emergency medical services provider makes.

(b)  The department shall adopt rules relating to the type of information an emergency medical services provider must provide under this section and the manner in which the information must be provided.

(c)  The department shall post the information the department receives under Subsection (a) in summary form on the department's Internet website. The department may not post any health information that is made confidential by another statute.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 871, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section 773.0614.  Authority To Revoke, Suspend, Disqualify For, Or Deny Certification Of Emergency Medical Services Personnel For Certain Criminal Offenses.

(a) In addition to the grounds under Section 773.061, the commissioner may suspend or revoke a certificate, disqualify a person from receiving a certificate, or deny a person the opportunity to take a certification examination on the grounds that the person has been convicted of, or placed on deferred adjudication community supervision or deferred disposition for, an offense that directly relates to the duties and responsibilities of emergency medical services personnel.

(b)  For purposes of Subsection (a), the department may not consider offenses for which points are assessed under Section 708.052, Transportation Code.

(c)  A certificate holder's certificate shall be revoked if the certificate holder is convicted of or placed on deferred adjudication community supervision or deferred disposition for:

(1)  an offense listed in Sections 3g(a)(1)(A) through (H), Article 42.12, Code of Criminal Procedure; or

(2)  an offense, other than an offense described by Subdivision (1), committed on or after September 1, 2009, for which the person is subject to registration under Chapter 62, Code of Criminal Procedure.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1149, Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section 773.0615.  Factors Considered In Suspension, Revocation, Or Denial Of Certificate.

(a) In determining whether an offense directly relates to the duties and responsibilities of emergency medical services personnel under Section 773.0614(a), the commissioner shall consider:

(1)  the nature and seriousness of the crime;

(2)  the relationship of the crime to the purposes for requiring certification to engage in emergency medical services;

(3)  the extent to which certification might offer an opportunity to engage in further criminal activity of the same type as that in which the person previously had been involved;  and

(4)  the relationship of the crime to the ability, capacity, or fitness required to perform the duties and discharge the responsibilities of emergency medical services personnel.

(b)  In determining the fitness to perform the duties and discharge the responsibilities of emergency medical services personnel for a person who has been convicted of, or placed on deferred adjudication community supervision or deferred disposition for, a crime the commissioner shall consider, in addition to the factors listed in Subsection (a):

(1)  the extent and nature of the person's past criminal activity;

(2)  the age of the person when the crime was committed;

(3)  the amount of time that has elapsed since the person's last criminal activity;

(4)  the conduct and work activity of the person before and after the criminal activity;

(5)  evidence of the person's rehabilitation or rehabilitative effort while incarcerated, after release, or since imposition of community supervision or deferred adjudication;  and

(6)  other evidence of the person's fitness, including letters of recommendation from:

(A)  prosecutors, law enforcement officers, correctional officers, or community supervision officers who prosecuted, arrested, or had custodial or other responsibility for the person;

(B)  the sheriff or chief of police in the community where the person resides; and

(C)  any other person in contact with the person.

(c)  The applicant or certificate holder has the responsibility, to the extent possible, to obtain and provide to the commissioner the recommendations of the persons required by Subsection (b)(6).

(d)  In addition to providing evidence related to the factors under Subsection (b), the applicant or certificate holder shall furnish proof in the form required by the department that the applicant or certificate holder has:

(1)  maintained a record of steady employment;

(2)  supported the applicant's or certificate holder's dependents;

(3)  maintained a record of good conduct;  and

(4)  paid all outstanding court costs, supervision fees, fines, and restitution ordered in any criminal case in which the applicant or certificate holder has been convicted, been placed on community supervision, or received deferred adjudication.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1149, Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section 773.0616.  Proceedings Governed By Administrative Procedure Act; Guidelines.

(a) A proceeding before the commissioner to consider the issues under Section 773.0615 is governed by Chapter 2001, Government Code.

(b)  The executive commissioner shall issue guidelines relating to the commissioner's decision-making under Sections 773.0614 and 773.0615.  The guidelines must state the reasons a particular crime is considered to relate to emergency medical services personnel and include any other criterion that may affect the decisions of the commissioner.

(c)  The executive commissioner shall file the guidelines with the secretary of state for publication in the Texas Register.

(d)  The department annually shall issue any amendments to the guidelines.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1149, Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section 773.0617.  Notice And Review Of Suspension, Revocation, Disqualification For, Or Denial Of Certification.

(a) If the commissioner suspends or revokes a certification, denies a person a certificate, or denies the opportunity to be examined for a certificate under Section 773.0614, the commissioner shall notify the person in writing of:

(1)  the reason for the suspension, revocation, denial, or disqualification;

(2)  the review procedure provided by Subsection (b); and

(3)  the earliest date the person may appeal the action of the commissioner.

(b)  A person whose certificate has been suspended or revoked or who has been denied a certificate or the opportunity to take an examination and who has exhausted the person's administrative appeals may file an action in the district court in Travis County for review of the evidence presented to the commissioner and the decision of the commissioner.

(c)  The petition for an action under Subsection (b) must be filed not later than the 30th day after the date the commissioner's decision is final.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1149, Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  773.062.  Emergency Suspension.

(a) The bureau chief shall issue an emergency order to suspend a certificate or license issued under this chapter if the bureau chief has reasonable cause to believe that the conduct of any certificate or license holder creates an imminent danger to the public health or safety.

(b)  An emergency suspension is effective immediately without a hearing on notice to the certificate or license holder. Notice must also be given to the sponsoring governmental entity if the holder is a provider exempt from payment of fees under Section 773.0581.

(c)  The holder may request in writing a hearing on the emergency suspension. The department shall conduct the hearing not earlier than the 10th day or later than the 30th day after the date on which the request is received and may continue, modify, or rescind the suspension. The department hearing rules and Chapter 2001, Government Code govern the hearing and any appeal from a disciplinary action related to the hearing.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 265, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 5.95(49), eff. Sept. 1, 1995.



Section  773.063.  Civil Penalty.

(a) The attorney general, a district attorney, or a county attorney may bring a civil action to compel compliance with this chapter or to enforce a rule adopted under this chapter.

(b)  A person who violates this chapter or a rule adopted under this chapter is liable for a civil penalty in addition to any injunctive relief or other remedy provided by law. The civil penalty may not exceed $250 a day for each violation.

(c)  Civil penalties recovered in a suit brought by the state at the department's request shall be deposited in the state treasury to the credit of the general revenue fund.

(d)  Civil penalties recovered in a suit brought by a local government shall be paid to the local government that brought the suit. A municipality or county is encouraged to use the amount of recovered penalties that exceed the cost of bringing suit to improve the delivery of emergency medical services in the municipality or county.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989.



Section  773.064.  Criminal Penalties.

(a) A person commits an offense if the person knowingly practices as, attempts to practice as, or represents himself to be an emergency medical technician-paramedic, emergency medical technician-intermediate, emergency medical technician, emergency care attendant, or licensed paramedic and the person does not hold an appropriate certificate issued by the department under this chapter. An offense under this subsection is a Class A misdemeanor.

(b)  An emergency medical services provider commits an offense if the provider knowingly advertises or causes the advertisement of a false, misleading, or deceptive statement or representation concerning emergency medical services staffing, equipment, and vehicles. An offense under this subsection is a Class A misdemeanor.

(c)  A person commits an offense if the person knowingly uses or permits to be used a vehicle that the person owns, operates, or controls to transport a sick or injured person unless the person is licensed as an emergency medical services provider by the department. An offense under this subsection is a Class A misdemeanor.

(d)  It is an exception to the application of Subsection (c) that the person transports a sick or injured person:

(1)  to medical care as an individual citizen not ordinarily engaged in that activity;

(2)  in a casualty situation that exceeds the basic vehicular capacity or capability of an emergency medical services provider; or

(3)  as an emergency medical services provider in a vehicle for which a variance has been granted under Section 773.052.

(e)  Venue for prosecution of an offense under this section is in the county in which the offense is alleged to have occurred.

Acts 1989, 71st Leg., ch. 678, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1989. Amended by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 266, eff. Sept. 1, 1991; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 435, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.



Section  773.065.  Administrative Penalty.

(a) The commissioner may assess an administrative penalty against an emergency medical services provider or a course coordinator who violates this chapter or a rule adopted or an order issued under this chapter.

(b)  In determining the amount of the penalty, the commissioner shall consider:

(1)  the emergency medical services provider's or course coordinator's previous violations;

(2)  the seriousness of the violation;

(3)  any hazard to the health and safety of the public;

(4)  the emergency medical services provider's or course coordinator's demonstrated good faith; and

(5)  any other matter as justice may require.

(c)  The penalty may not exceed $7,500 for each violation. The board by rule shall establish gradations of penalties in accordance with the relative seriousness of the violation.

(d)  Each day a violation continues may be considered a separate violation.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 7, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 16, eff. Aug. 28, 1995; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 435, Sec. 5, eff. Sept. 1, 1997; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.84(i), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  773.066.  Assessment Of Administrative Penalty.

(a) An administrative penalty may be assessed only after an emergency medical services provider or course coordinator charged with a violation is provided notice and given an opportunity to request a hearing.

(b)  If a hearing is held, the commissioner shall make findings of fact and shall issue a written decision regarding whether the emergency medical services provider or course coordinator committed a violation and the amount of any penalty to be assessed.

(c)  If the emergency medical services provider or course coordinator charged with the violation does not request a hearing, the commissioner shall determine whether the provider or course coordinator committed a violation and the amount of any penalty to be assessed.

(d)  After making a determination under Subsection (b) or (c) that a penalty is to be assessed against an emergency medical services provider or a course coordinator, the commissioner shall issue an order requiring that the emergency medical services provider or course coordinator pay the penalty.

(e)  Not later than the 30th day after the date an order is issued under Subsection (d), the commissioner shall give written notice of the order to the emergency medical services provider or course coordinator.

(f)  The commissioner may consolidate a hearing held under this section with another proceeding.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 7, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 17, eff. Aug. 28, 1995.



Section  773.067.  Payment Of Administrative Penalty.

(a) Not later than the 30th day after the date on which an order charging the emergency medical services provider or course coordinator with a penalty is final as provided by Chapter 2001, Government Code, the person charged shall:

(1)  pay the penalty in full;

(2)  pay the penalty and file a petition for judicial review contesting the occurrence of the violation, the amount of the penalty, or both the occurrence of the violation and the amount of the penalty; or

(3)  without paying the penalty, file a petition for judicial review contesting the occurrence of the violation, the amount of the penalty, or both the occurrence of the violation and the amount of the penalty.

(b)  Within the 30-day period, a person who acts under Subsection (a)(3) may:

(1)  stay enforcement of the penalty by:

(A)  paying the amount of the penalty to the court for placement in an escrow account; or

(B)  giving to the court a supersedeas bond that is approved by the court for the amount of the penalty and that is effective until all judicial review of the commissioner's order is final; or

(2)  request the court to stay enforcement of the penalty by:

(A)  filing with the court a sworn affidavit of the person stating that the person is financially unable to pay the amount of the penalty and is financially unable to give the supersedeas bond; and

(B)  giving a copy of the affidavit to the commissioner by certified mail.

(c)  If the commissioner receives a copy of an affidavit under Subsection (b)(2), the commissioner may file with the court, within five days after the date the copy is received, a contest to the affidavit. The court shall hold a hearing on the facts alleged in the affidavit as soon as practicable and shall stay the enforcement of the penalty on finding that the alleged facts are true. The person who files an affidavit has the burden of proving that the person is financially unable to pay the amount of the penalty and to give a supersedeas bond.

(d)  If the person does not pay the amount of the penalty and the enforcement of the penalty is not stayed, the commissioner may refer the matter to the attorney general for collection of the amount of the penalty.

(e)  Judicial review of the order of the commissioner:

(1)  is instituted by filing a petition as provided by Subchapter G, Chapter 2001, Government Code; and

(2)  is under the substantial evidence rule.

(f)  If the court sustains the occurrence of the violation, the court may uphold or reduce the amount of the penalty and order the person to pay the full or reduced amount of the penalty. If the court does not sustain the occurrence of the violation, the court shall order that no penalty is owed.

(g)  When the judgment of the court becomes final, the court shall proceed under this subsection. If the person paid the penalty and if the amount of the penalty is reduced or the penalty is not upheld by the court, the court shall order that the appropriate amount plus accrued interest be remitted to the person. The rate of the interest is the rate charged on loans to depository institutions by the New York Federal Reserve Bank, and the interest shall be paid for the period beginning on the date the penalty was paid and ending on the date the penalty is remitted. If the person gave a supersedeas bond and if the penalty is not upheld by the court, the court shall order the release of the bond. If the person gave a supersedeas bond and if the amount of the penalty is reduced, the court shall order the release of the bond after the person pays the amount.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 7, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 915, Sec. 18, eff. Aug. 28, 1995.



Section  773.069.  Recovery Of Administrative Penalty By Attorney General.

The attorney general at the request of the commissioner may bring a civil action to recover an administrative penalty assessed under this subchapter.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 7, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  773.070.  Access To Certain Criminal History Record Information. (a) To

(d) Repealed by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 790, Sec. 46(22), eff. Sept. 1, 1993.

(e)  The board may deny licensure or certification to an applicant who does not provide a complete set of the required fingerprints.

(f)  to (i) Repealed by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 790, Sec. 46(22), eff. Sept. 1, 1993.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 7, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 790, Sec. 46(17), eff. Sept. 1, 1993.



Section  773.071.  Fees.

(a) To the extent feasible, the board by rule shall set the fees under this subchapter in amounts necessary for the department to recover the cost of administering this subchapter.

(b)  Subsection (a) does not apply to fees for which Section 773.059 prescribes the method for determining the amount of the fees.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.84(j), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Subchapter D. Confidential Communications

Section  773.091.  Confidential Communications.

(a) A communication between certified emergency medical services personnel or a physician providing medical supervision and a patient that is made in the course of providing emergency medical services to the patient is confidential and privileged and may not be disclosed except as provided by this chapter.

(b)  Records of the identity, evaluation, or treatment of a patient by emergency medical services personnel or by a physician providing medical supervision that are created by the emergency medical services personnel or physician or maintained by an emergency medical services provider are confidential and privileged and may not be disclosed except as provided by this chapter.

(c)  Any person who receives information from confidential communications or records as described by this chapter, other than a person listed in Section 773.092 who is acting on the survivor's behalf, may not disclose the information except to the extent that disclosure is consistent with the authorized purposes for which the information was obtained.

(d)  This subchapter governs confidential communications or records concerning a patient regardless of when the patient received the services of emergency medical services personnel or a physician providing medical supervision.

(e)  Notwithstanding Rule 501, Texas Rules of Evidence, the privilege of confidentiality may be claimed in any criminal, civil, or administrative proceeding and may be claimed by the patient or the emergency medical services personnel or physician acting on the patient's behalf.

(f)  If the emergency medical services personnel or physician claims the privilege of confidentiality on behalf of the patient, the authority to do so is presumed in the absence of evidence to the contrary.

(g)  The privilege of confidentiality under this section does not extend to information regarding the presence, nature of injury or illness, age, sex, occupation, and city of residence of a patient who is receiving emergency medical services. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed as requiring or permitting emergency services personnel to make a diagnosis.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 8, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1420, Sec. 10.008, eff. Sept. 1, 2001.



Section  773.092.  Exceptions.

(a) Exceptions to the confidentiality or privilege in court or administrative proceedings exist:

(1)  when proceedings are brought by the patient against emergency medical services personnel, a physician providing medical supervision, or an emergency medical services provider, and in any criminal proceeding or certification revocation or license revocation proceeding in which the patient is a complaining witness and in which disclosure is relevant to the claim or defense of emergency medical services personnel, a physician providing medical supervision, or an emergency medical services provider;

(2)  when the patient or someone authorized to act on behalf of the patient submits a written consent to release any of the confidential information as provided by Section 773.093;

(3)  when the purpose of the proceedings is to substantiate and collect on a claim for emergency medical services rendered to the patient;

(4)  in any civil litigation or administrative proceeding, if relevant, brought by the patient or someone on the patient's behalf, if the patient is attempting to recover monetary damages for any physical or mental condition, including death of the patient;

(5)  when the proceeding is a disciplinary investigation or proceeding against emergency medical services personnel conducted under this chapter, provided that the department shall protect the identity of any patient whose medical records are examined, unless the patient is covered under Subdivision (1) or has submitted written consent to the release of the patient's emergency medical services records under Section 773.093; or

(6)  when the proceeding is a criminal prosecution in which the patient is a victim, witness, or defendant.

(b)  Information under Subdivision (4) is discoverable in any court or administrative proceeding in this state if the court or administrative body has jurisdiction of the subject matter, pursuant to rules of procedure specified for the matter.

(c)  Subdivision (5) does not authorize the release of confidential information to instigate or substantiate criminal charges against a patient.

(d)  Confidential records or communications are not discoverable in a criminal proceeding until the court in which the prosecution is pending makes an in camera determination as to the relevancy of the records or communications or any portion of the records or communications. A determination that confidential records or communications are discoverable is not a determination as to the admissibility of the records or communications.

(e)  Communications and records that are confidential under this section may be disclosed to:

(1)  medical or law enforcement personnel if the emergency medical services personnel, the physician providing medical supervision, or the emergency medical services provider determines that there is a probability of imminent physical danger to any person or if there is a probability of immediate mental or emotional injury to the patient;

(2)  governmental agencies if the disclosure is required or authorized by law;

(3)  qualified persons to the extent necessary for management audits, financial audits, program evaluation, system improvement, or research, except that any report of the research, audit, or evaluation may not directly or indirectly identify a patient;

(4)  any person who bears a written consent of the patient or other persons authorized to act on the patient's behalf for the release of confidential information as provided by Section 773.093;

(5)  the department for data collection or complaint investigation;

(6)  other emergency medical services personnel, other physicians, and other personnel under the direction of a physician who are participating in the diagnosis, evaluation, or treatment of a patient;

(7)  individuals, corporations, or governmental agencies involved in the payment or collection of fees for emergency medical services rendered by emergency medical services personnel.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 8, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 435, Sec. 6, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.



Section  773.093.  Consent.

(a) Consent for the release of confidential information must be in writing and signed by the patient, a parent or legal guardian if the patient is a minor, a legal guardian if the patient has been adjudicated incompetent to manage the patient's personal affairs, an attorney ad litem appointed for the patient, or a personal representative if the patient is deceased. The written consent must specify:

(1)  the information or records to be covered by the release;

(2)  the reasons or purpose for the release; and

(3)  the person to whom the information is to be released.

(b)  The patient or other person authorized to consent may withdraw consent to the release of any information by submitting a written notice of withdrawal to the person or program to which consent was provided. Withdrawal of consent does not affect any information disclosed before the date on which written notice of the withdrawal was received.

(c)  A person who receives information made confidential by this chapter may disclose the information to others only to the extent consistent with the authorized purposes for which consent to release the information was obtained.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 8, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  773.094.  Injunction; Damages.

A person aggrieved by an unauthorized disclosure of communications or records that are confidential under this subchapter may petition the district court of the county in which the person resides or, in the case of a nonresident of the state, a district court of Travis County for appropriate injunctive relief. The petition takes precedence over all civil matters on the docketed court except those matters to which equal precedence on the docket is granted by law. A person injured by an unauthorized disclosure of communications or records that are confidential under this subchapter may bring an action for damages.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 8, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  773.095.  Records And Proceedings Confidential.

(a) The proceedings and records of organized committees of hospitals, medical societies, emergency medical services providers, emergency medical services and trauma care systems, or first responder organizations relating to the review, evaluation, or improvement of an emergency medical services provider, a first responder organization, an emergency medical services and trauma care system, or emergency medical services personnel are confidential and not subject to disclosure by court subpoena or otherwise.

(b)  The records and proceedings may be used by the committee and the committee members only in the exercise of proper committee functions.

(c)  This section does not apply to records made or maintained in the regular course of business by an emergency medical services provider, a first responder organization, or emergency medical services personnel.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 8, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 435, Sec. 7, eff. Sept. 1, 1997; Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 874, Sec. 6, eff. Sept. 1, 2001.



Section  773.096.  Immunity For Committee Members.

A member of an organized committee under Section 773.095 is not liable for damages to a person for an action taken or recommendation made within the scope of the functions of the committee if the committee member acts without malice and in the reasonable belief that the action or recommendation is warranted by the facts known to the committee member.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 8, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Subchapter E. Emergency Medical Services And Trauma Care Systems

Section  773.111.  Legislative Findings.

(a) The legislature finds that death caused by injury is the leading cause of death for persons one through 44 years of age, and the third overall cause of death for all ages. Effective emergency medical services response and resuscitation systems, medical care systems, and medical facilities reduce the occurrence of unnecessary mortality.

(b)  It is estimated that trauma costs more than $63 million a day nationally, which includes lost wages, medical expenses, and indirect costs. Proportionately, this cost to Texas would be more than $4 million a day. Many hospitals provide emergency medical care to patients who are unable to pay for catastrophic injuries directly or through an insurance or entitlement program.

(c)  In order to improve the health of the people of the state, it is necessary to improve the quality of emergency and medical care to the people of Texas who are victims of unintentional, life-threatening injuries by encouraging hospitals to provide trauma care and increasing the availability of emergency medical services.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 267, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Redesignated from Health & Safety Code Sec. 773.081 by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 9, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  773.112.  Duties Of Board; Rules.

(a) The board by rule shall adopt minimum standards and objectives to implement emergency medical services and trauma care systems. The board by rule shall provide for the designation of trauma facilities and for triage, transfer, and transportation policies. The board shall consider guidelines adopted by the American College of Surgeons and the American College of Emergency Physicians in adopting rules under this section.

(b)  The rules must provide specific requirements for the care of trauma patients, must ensure that the trauma care is fully coordinated with all hospitals and emergency medical services in the delivery area, and must reflect the geographic areas of the state, considering time and distance.

(c)  The rules must include:

(1)  prehospital care management guidelines for triage and transportation of trauma patients;

(2)  flow patterns of trauma patients and geographic boundaries regarding trauma patients;

(3)  assurances that trauma facilities will provide quality care to trauma patients referred to the facilities;

(4)  minimum requirements for resources and equipment needed by a trauma facility to treat trauma patients;

(5)  standards for the availability and qualifications of the health care personnel, including physicians and surgeons, treating trauma patients within a facility;

(6)  requirements for data collection, including trauma incidence reporting, system operation, and patient outcome;

(7)  requirements for periodic performance evaluation of the system and its components; and

(8)  assurances that designated trauma facilities will not refuse to accept the transfer of a trauma patient from another facility solely because of the person's inability to pay for services or because of the person's age, sex, race, religion, or national origin.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 267, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Redesignated from Health & Safety Code Sec. 773.082 by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 9, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 623, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1997.



Section  773.113.  Duties Of Bureau.

(a) The bureau shall:

(1)  develop and monitor a statewide emergency medical services and trauma care system;

(2)  designate trauma facilities;

(3)  develop and maintain a trauma reporting and analysis system to:

(A)  identify severely injured trauma patients at each health care facility in this state;

(B)  identify the total amount of uncompensated trauma care expenditures made each fiscal year by each health care facility in this state; and

(C)  monitor trauma patient care in each health care facility, including each designated trauma center, in emergency medical services and trauma care systems in this state; and

(4)  provide for coordination and cooperation between this state and any other state with which this state shares a standard metropolitan statistical area.

(b)  The bureau may grant an exception to a rule adopted under Section 773.112 if it finds that compliance with the rule would not be in the best interests of the persons served in the affected local emergency medical services and trauma care delivery area.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 267, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Redesignated from Health & Safety Code Sec. 773.083 by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 9, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  773.1135.  Duties Of Department.

The department shall develop performance measures for regional advisory councils in trauma service areas to:

(1)  promote the provision of a minimum level of emergency medical services in a trauma service area in accordance with the rules adopted under Section 773.112;

(2)  promote the provision of quality care and service by the emergency medical services and trauma care system in accordance with the rules adopted under Section 773.112; and

(3)  maximize the accuracy of information provided by a regional advisory council to the department or bureau for increased council effectiveness.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 849, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  773.114.  System Requirements.

(a) Each emergency medical services and trauma care system must have:

(1)  local or regional medical control for all field care and transportation, consistent with geographic and current communications capability;

(2)  triage, transport, and transfer protocols; and

(3)  one or more hospitals categorized according to trauma care capabilities using standards adopted by board rule.

(b)  This subchapter does not prohibit a health care facility from providing services that it is authorized to provide under a license issued to the facility by the department.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 267, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Redesignated from Health & Safety Code Sec. 773.084 by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 9, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  773.115.  Trauma Facilities.

(a) The bureau may designate trauma facilities that are a part of an emergency medical services and trauma care system. A trauma facility shall be designated by the level of trauma care and services provided in accordance with the American College of Surgeons guidelines for level I and II trauma facilities and rules adopted by the board for level III and IV trauma facilities. In adopting rules under this section, the board may consider trauma caseloads, geographic boundaries, or minimum population requirements, but the bureau may not deny designation solely on these criteria. The board may not set an arbitrary limit on the number of facilities designated as trauma facilities.

(b)  A health care facility may apply to the bureau for designation as a trauma facility, and the bureau shall grant the designation if the facility meets the requirements for designation prescribed by board rules.

(c)  After September 1, 1993, a health care facility may not use the terms "trauma facility," "trauma hospital," "trauma center," or similar terminology in its signs or advertisements or in the printed materials and information it provides to the public unless the facility has been designated as a trauma facility under this subchapter.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 267, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Redesignated from Health & Safety Code Sec. 773.085 by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 9, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 435, Sec. 8, eff. Sept. 1, 1997; Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 874, Sec. 7, eff. Sept. 1, 2001.



Section  773.116.  Fees.

(a) The bureau shall charge a fee to a health care facility that applies for initial or continuing designation as a trauma facility.

(b)  The board by rule shall set the amount of the fee schedule for initial or continuing designation as a trauma facility according to the number of beds in the health care facility. The amount of the fee may not exceed:

(1)  $5,000 for a Level I or II facility;

(2)  $2,500 for a Level III facility; or

(3)  $1,000 for a Level IV facility.

(c)  Repealed by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.84(l).

(d)  To the extent feasible, the board by rule shall set the fee in an amount necessary for the department to recover the cost directly related to designating trauma facilities under this subchapter.

(e)  This section does not restrict the authority of a health care facility to provide a service for which it has received a license under other state law.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 267, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Redesignated from Health & Safety Code Sec. 773.086 by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 9, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 198, Sec. 2.84(k), (l), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  773.117.  Denial, Suspension, Or Revocation Of Designation.

(a) The department may deny, suspend, or revoke a health care facility's designation as a trauma facility if the facility fails to comply with the rules adopted under this subchapter.

(b)  The denial, suspension, or revocation of a designation by the department and the appeal from that action are governed by the department's rules for a contested case hearing and by Chapter 2001, Government Code.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 267, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Redesignated from Health & Safety Code Sec. 773.087 by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 9, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Amended by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 5.95(49), eff. Sept. 1, 1995.



Section  773.119.  Grant Program.

(a) The department shall establish a program to award grants to initiate, expand, maintain, and improve emergency medical services and to support medical systems and facilities that provide trauma care.

(b)  The board by rule shall establish eligibility criteria for awarding the grants. The rules must require the department to consider:

(1)  the need of an area for the provision of emergency medical services or trauma care and the extent to which the grant would meet the identified need;

(2)  the availability of personnel and training programs;

(3)  the availability of other funding sources;

(4)  the assurance of providing quality services;

(5)  the use or acquisition of helicopters for emergency medical evacuation; and

(6)  the development or existence of an emergency medical services system.

(c)  The department may approve grants according to the rules adopted by the board. A grant awarded under this section is governed by the Uniform Grant and Contract Management Act of 1981 (Article 4413(32g), Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes) and by the rules adopted under that Act.

(d)  The department may require a grantee to provide matching funds equal to not more than 75 percent of the amount of the grant.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 267, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Redesignated from Health & Safety Code Sec. 773.089 by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 9, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  773.120.  Acceptance Of Gifts.

A trauma facility or an emergency medical services and trauma care system may accept gifts or other contributions for the purposes of this subchapter.

Added by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 14, Sec. 267, eff. Sept. 1, 1991. Redesignated from Health & Safety Code Sec. 773.090 by Acts 1991, 72nd Leg., ch. 605, Sec. 9, eff. Sept. 1, 1991.



Section  773.122.  Payments From The Accounts.

(a) The commissioner, with advice and counsel from the chairpersons of the trauma service area regional advisory councils, shall use money in the accounts established under Sections 771.072(f) and 773.006 to fund county and regional emergency medical services, designated trauma facilities, and trauma care systems in accordance with this section.

(b)  The commissioner shall maintain a reserve of $500,000 of money appropriated from the accounts for extraordinary emergencies.

(c)  In any fiscal year the commissioner shall use 50 percent of the appropriated money remaining from the accounts, after any amount necessary to maintain the reserve established by Subsection (b) is deducted, to fund, in connection with an effort to provide coordination with the appropriate trauma service area, the cost of supplies, operational expenses, education and training, equipment, vehicles, and communications systems for local emergency medical services. The money shall be distributed on behalf of eligible recipients in each county to the trauma service area regional advisory council for that county. To receive a distribution under this subsection, the regional advisory council must be incorporated as an entity that is exempt from federal income tax under Section 501(a), Internal Revenue Code of 1986, and its subsequent amendments, by being listed as an exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the code. The share of the money allocated to the eligible recipients in a county's geographic area shall be based on the relative geographic size and population of the county and on the relative number of emergency or trauma care runs performed by eligible recipients in the county. Money that is not disbursed by a regional advisory council to eligible recipients for approved functions by the end of the fiscal year in which the funds were disbursed may be retained by the regional advisory council to be used during the following fiscal year in accordance with this subsection. Money that is not disbursed by the regional advisory council during the following fiscal year shall be returned to the account.

(d)  In any fiscal year, the commissioner may use not more than 20 percent of the appropriated money remaining from the accounts, after any amount necessary to maintain the reserve established by Subsection (b) is deducted, for operation of the 22 trauma service areas and for equipment, communications, and education and training for the areas. Money distributed under this subsection shall be distributed on behalf of eligible recipients in each county to the trauma service area regional advisory council for that county. To receive a distribution under this subsection, the regional advisory council must be incorporated as an entity that is exempt from federal income tax under Section 501(a), Internal Revenue Code of 1986, and its subsequent amendments, by being listed as an exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the code. A regional advisory council's share of money distributed under this section shall be based on the relative geographic size and population of each trauma service area and on the relative amount of trauma care provided. Money that is not disbursed by a regional advisory council to eligible recipients for approved functions by the end of the fiscal year in which the funds were disbursed may be retained by the regional advisory council to be used during the following fiscal year in accordance with this subsection. Money that is not disbursed by the regional advisory council during the following fiscal year shall be returned to the account.

(e)  In any fiscal year, the commissioner may use not more than three percent of the appropriated money from the accounts after any amount necessary to maintain the reserve established by Subsection (b) is deducted to fund the administrative costs of the bureau of emergency management of the department associated with administering the state emergency medical services program, the trauma program, and the accounts and to fund the costs of monitoring and providing technical assistance for those programs and the accounts.

(f)  In any fiscal year, the commissioner shall use at least 27 percent of the appropriated money remaining from the accounts after any amount necessary to maintain the reserve established by Subsection (b) is deducted and the money from the accounts not otherwise distributed under this section to fund a portion of the uncompensated trauma care provided at facilities designated as state trauma facilities by the department. The administrator of a designated facility may request a regional advisory council chairperson to petition the department for disbursement of funds to a designated trauma facility in the chairperson's trauma service area that has provided uncompensated trauma care. Funds may be disbursed under this subsection based on a proportionate share of uncompensated trauma care provided in the state and may be used to fund innovative projects to enhance the delivery of patient care in the overall emergency medical services and trauma care system.

(g)  The department shall review the percentages for disbursement of funds in the accounts on an annual basis and shall make recommendations for proposed changes to ensure that appropriate and fair funding is provided under this section.

Added by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1157, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1997. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1045, Sec. 16, eff. June 18, 1999; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1411, Sec. 19.07, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1213, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  773.123.  Control Of Expenditures From Accounts.

Money distributed from the accounts established under Sections 771.072(f) and 773.006 shall be used in accordance with Section 773.122 on the authorization of the executive committee of the trauma service area regional advisory council.

Added by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1157, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1997. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1045, Sec. 17, eff. June 18, 1999; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1411, Sec. 19.08, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1213, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  773.124.  Loss Of Funding Eligibility.

For a period of not less than one year or more than three years, as determined by the department, the department may not disburse money under Section 773.122 to a trauma service area regional advisory council, county, municipality, or local recipient that the department finds used money in violation of that section.

Added by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1157, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1997. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1411, Sec. 19.09, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Subchapter F. Medical Information Provided By Certain Emergency Medical Services Operators

Section  773.141.  Definitions.

In this subchapter:

(1)  "Emergency call" means a telephone call or other similar communication from a member of the public, as part of a 9-1-1 system or otherwise, made to obtain emergency medical services.

(2)  "Emergency medical services operator" means a person who, as a volunteer or employee of a public agency, as that term is defined by Section 771.001, receives emergency calls.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1411, Sec. 19.10, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  773.142. 

 APPLICATION OF

Subchapter

. This subchapter does not apply to a physician or other licensed person who may provide medical information under law.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1411, Sec. 19.10, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  773.143.  Provision Of Medical Information.

An emergency medical services operator may provide medical information to a member of the public during an emergency call if:

(1)  the operator has successfully completed an emergency medical services operator training program and holds a certificate issued under Section 773.144; and

(2)  the information provided substantially conforms to the protocol for delivery of the information adopted by the board under Section 773.145.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1411, Sec. 19.10, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  773.144.  Training Programs.

(a) The department may offer emergency medical services operator training programs and may approve training programs offered by other persons. The board by rule shall establish minimum standards for approval of training programs and certification and decertification of program instructors.

(b)  The provider of an emergency medical services operator training program shall issue an emergency medical services operator a certificate evidencing completion of the training program. The board by rule may require that, before issuance of the certificate, the operator successfully complete an examination administered by the board, by the provider of the training program, or by another person.

(c)  The board by rule may provide that a certificate issued under Subsection (b) expires at the end of a specified period not less than one year after the date on which the certificate is issued and may adopt requirements, including additional training or examination, for renewal of the certificate.

(d)  The board by rule may adopt other requirements relating to emergency medical services operator training programs. The establishment of minimum standards under this section does not prohibit the entity that is employing or accepting the volunteer services of the emergency medical services operator from imposing additional training standards or procedures.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1411, Sec. 19.10, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  773.145.  Medical Information. The

board by rule shall adopt a protocol that must be used to provide medical information under Section 773.143. The protocol may include the use of a flash-card system or other similar system designed to make the information readily accessible to the emergency medical services operator in an understandable form.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1411, Sec. 19.10, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  773.146.  Limitation On Civil Liability.

(a) An emergency medical services operator who holds a certificate under Section 773.144 is not liable for damages that arise from the provision of medical information according to the protocol adopted under Section 773.145 if the information is provided in good faith. This subsection does not apply to an act or omission of the operator that constitutes gross negligence, recklessness, or intentional misconduct. This subsection does not affect any liability imposed on a public agency for the conduct of the emergency medical services operator under Section 101.062, Civil Practice and Remedies Code.

(b)  Section 101.062, Civil Practice and Remedies Code, governs the liability of a public agency the employees or volunteers of which provide medical information under this subchapter.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1411, Sec. 19.10, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Section  773.147.  Fees.

(a) The board by rule may adopt fees for:

(1)  training programs provided by the board under Section 773.144; and

(2)  the approval of program instructors and of training programs offered by other persons.

(b)  The fees adopted under this section may not exceed the amount necessary for the department to recover the cost of administering this subchapter.

Added by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1411, Sec. 19.10, eff. Sept. 1, 1999.



Subchapter G. Pediatric Emergency Medical Services

Section  773.171.  Emergency Medical Services For Children Program.

(a) The emergency medical services for children program is in the bureau of emergency management.

(b)  The department shall provide coordination and support for a statewide pediatric emergency services system.

(c)  The department may solicit, receive, and spend funds it receives from the federal government and public or private sources to carry out the purposes of this subchapter.

Added by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 513, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 30, 1993.



Section  773.173.  Duties Of Board; Rules.

(a) On the recommendation of the advisory committee, the board shall adopt minimum standards and objectives to implement a pediatric emergency services system, including rules that:

(1)  provide guidelines for categorization of a facility's pediatric capability;

(2)  provide for triage, transfer, and transportation policies for pediatric care;

(3)  establish guidelines for:

(A)  prehospital care management for triage and transportation of a pediatric patient;

(B)  prehospital and hospital equipment that is necessary and appropriate for the care of a pediatric patient;

(C)  necessary pediatric emergency equipment and training in long-term care facilities; and

(D)  an interhospital transfer system for a critically ill or injured pediatric patient; and

(4)  provide for data collection and analysis.

(b)  The board and the advisory committee shall consider guidelines endorsed by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American College of Surgeons in recommending and adopting rules under this section.

(c)  The bureau may grant an exception to a rule adopted under this section if it finds that compliance with the rule would not be in the best interests of persons served in the affected local pediatric emergency medical services system.

(d)  This subchapter does not prohibit a health care facility from providing services that it is authorized to provide under a license issued to the facility by the department.

Added by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 513, Sec. 1, eff. Aug. 30, 1993.



Subchapter H. Emergency Stroke Services

Section 773.201.  Legislative Intent.

The legislature finds that a strong system for stroke survival is needed in the state's communities in order to treat stroke victims in a timely manner and to improve the overall treatment of stroke victims.  Therefore, the legislature intends to construct an emergency treatment system in this state so that stroke victims may be quickly identified and transported to and treated in appropriate stroke treatment facilities.

Added by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 299, Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2005.



Section 773.202.  Definitions.

In this subchapter:

(1)  "Advisory council" means the advisory council established under Section 773.012.

(2)  "Stroke committee" means the committee appointed under Section 773.203.

(3)  "Stroke facility" means a health care facility that:

(A)  is capable of primary or comprehensive treatment of stroke victims;

(B)  is part of an emergency medical services and trauma care system as defined by Section 773.003;

(C)  has a health care professional available 24 hours a day, seven days a week who is knowledgeable about stroke care and capable of carrying out acute stroke therapy; and

(D)  records patient treatment and outcomes.

Added by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 299, Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2005.



Section 773.203.  Stroke Committee.

(a) The advisory council shall appoint a stroke committee to assist the advisory council in the development of a statewide stroke emergency transport plan and stroke facility criteria.

(b)  The stroke committee must include the following members:

(1)  a licensed physician appointed from a list of physicians eligible for accreditation in vascular neurology from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, recommended by a statewide organization of neurologists;

(2)  a licensed interventional neuroradiologist appointed from a list of neuroradiologists recommended by a statewide organization of radiologists;

(3)  a neurosurgeon with stroke expertise;

(4)  a member of the Texas Council on Cardiovascular Disease and Stroke who has expertise in stroke care;

(5)  a licensed physician appointed from a list of physicians recommended by a statewide organization of emergency physicians;

(6)  a neuroscience registered nurse with stroke expertise; and

(7)  a volunteer member of a nonprofit organization specializing in stroke treatment, prevention, and education.

(c)  Chapter 2110, Government Code, does not apply to the stroke committee.

Added by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 299, Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2005.



Section 773.204.  Duties Of Stroke Committee; Development Of Stroke Emergency Transport Plan And Stroke Facility Criteria.

(a) The advisory council, with the assistance of the stroke committee and in collaboration with the Texas Council on Cardiovascular Disease and Stroke, shall develop a statewide stroke emergency transport plan and stroke facility criteria.

(b)  The stroke emergency transport plan must include:

(1)  training requirements on stroke recognition and treatment, including emergency screening procedures;

(2)  a list of appropriate early treatments to stabilize patients;

(3)  protocols for rapid transport to a stroke facility when rapid transport is appropriate and it is safe to bypass another health care facility; and

(4)  plans for coordination with statewide agencies or committees on programs for stroke prevention and community education regarding stroke and stroke emergency transport.

(c)  In developing the stroke emergency transport plan and stroke facility criteria, the stroke committee shall consult the criteria for stroke facilities established by national medical organizations such as the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations.

Added by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 299, Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2005.



Section 773.205.  Rules.

The executive commissioner may adopt rules regarding a statewide stroke emergency transport plan and stroke facility criteria based on recommendations from the advisory council.

Added by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 299, Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2005.


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