The Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee is responsible for the oversight of health care policy. Its focus is legislation that works to prevent disease, promote well-being at all life stages and encourage informed choices that enrich the quality of life for residents and communities.
Democratic Research Aide:  Nicole A. Brown   
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Prieto, Lagana, Andrzejczak, Benson & Mazzeo Bill to Boost After-Hospital Care for Patients Continues Advancing

Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto Assembly approved legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Speaker Vincent Prieto, Joseph Lagana, Bob Andrzejczak, Daniel Benson and Vincent Mazzeo to help boost the quality of care delivered to patients at home after they leave the hospital was advanced Monday by the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee.

"The follow-up care required after a hospital stay can be incredibly complicated and overwhelming for the average person," said Prieto (D-Bergen/Hudson). "By having hospitals work cooperatively with a patient's preferred caregiver, we can ensure that they're getting the level of care they need from the person they feel most comfortable with..."

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Quijano, Eustace Bill to Ensure Proper Training and Use of Defibrillators In New Jersey Schools Passes Assembly

(TRENTON) - The General Assembly approved on Monday bipartisan legislation sponsored in part by Assembly Democrats Annette Quijano and Timothy Eustace to require the board of education of any school district that maintains an automated external defibrillator to adopt a policy concerning the use of the device.

"Used responsibly and properly, defibrillators can save lives," said Quijano (D-Union). "Staff and students should be fully aware of a defibrillator in the school and its proper use. This legislation helps to do just that."

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Mukherji, Quijano & Pinkin Bill to Promote Public Awareness and Education About Parkinson's Disease Continues to Advance

(TRENTON) - Legislation sponsored by Assembly members Raj Mukherji, Annette Quijano and Nancy Pinkin that would create a public awareness and education program about Parkinson's disease was approved by the full Assembly on Monday.

According to the Parkinson's Disease Foundation, as many as one million Americans live with Parkinson's disease, which is more than the combined number of people diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy and Lou Gehrig's disease. Approximately 60,000 Americans are diagnosed with Parkinson's disease each year, and this number does not reflect the thousands of cases that go undetected. An estimated seven to 10 million people worldwide are living with Parkinson's disease. Incidence of Parkinson's increases with age, but an estimated four percent of people with PD are diagnosed before the age of 50. Men are one and a half times more likely to have Parkinson's than women.

"An estimated 1.5 million Americans have been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease," said Mukherji (D-Hudson). "This is a disease that affects too many New Jersey families. The more we know about Parkinson's, the more we can help residents identify symptoms and find the resources they need to help themselves and their loved ones."

Designated the "Parkinson's Disease Public Awareness and Education Act," the bill (A-2576) establishes a Parkinson's disease public awareness and education program in the Department of Health (DOH).

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6-bill Domestic Violence Victim Assistance Package, Gun Safety Bills & Halfway House Reform Top Monday Assembly Voting Session

Dam Restoration, Public School Defibrillator Usage & Parkinson's Disease Awareness Also on Tap

Six bills to improve domestic violence victim protections and legislation to criminalize use of a defaced firearm to injure a police officer, establish a statewide gun buyback program and create a task force to study halfway house reform top Monday's Assembly voting session.

Dam restoration, public school policies for defibrillator usage and Parkinson's disease awareness are also on tap…

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Johnson: Another Christie Healthcare Veto Hurts NJ Families

(TRENTON)- Assemblyman Gordon Johnson (D-Bergen) issued the following statement on the Governor's veto of his legislation (A-2576) that would have provided Medicaid coverage for family planning services to individuals with incomes up to 200 percent of the federal poverty level:
"To veto expanded healthcare for families below the poverty level is absolutely shameful.

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Vainieri Huttle & Sumter Bill to Improve Quality of Life for Children with Hunter & Hurler Syndromes Signed into Law

Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle Legislation sponsored by Assemblywomen Valerie Vainieri Huttle and Shavonda Sumter to help improve the quality and longevity of life for children suffering from rare genetic disorders known as Hunter and Hurler syndromes has been signed into law.

"Children with these syndromes are often unable to enjoy the simple pleasures of youth because so much of their lives are occupied with undergoing medical treatments and tests rather than just being kids," said Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen). "The 'Let Them Be Little Act' will help these children do just that and hopefully increase their quality of life..."

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Vainieri Huttle on Christie's Veto of Beach/Parks Smoking Ban: The Governor is Standing in the Way of a Healthier NJ

Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen) on Wednesday called Gov. Christie's veto of a bill (A-1080) she sponsored to ban smoking at public parks and beaches a blow to both public health and the environment. The bill, which Christie let sit on his desk for the last two and a half months, would have expanded New Jersey's role as a leader in the public health movement after being one of the earliest states to ban smoking in indoor public places and raise the tobacco purchasing age to 19 in 2006:

"This is extremely unfortunate from both a public health perspective and from an environmental perspective. Tobacco is the leading cause of preventable death in this country and everyone is well aware of the dangers of second-hand smoking in this day and age. The damage discarded cigarettes do to our already fragile ecosystems is also well-documented..."

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Assembly Dems Explain Why They're Taking the Food Stamp Challenge

Assemblyman Reed Gusciora Assembly Democrats Reed Gusciora, Mila M. Jasey, John F. McKeon, Charles Mainor, Annette Quijano, Gary S. Schaer and L. Grace Spencer were among those who had the following published in the The Star-Ledger explaining why they and their colleagues are undertaking the Greater MetroWest Food Stamp Challenge:

"Taking the Food Stamp Challenge is an opportunity for us as practitioners to understand the true realities of hunger, not just the statistics. In the counties that cover: Essex, Morris, Union, Sussex and parts of Somerset, we see an increase of those in need of food assistance. Increasing requests made to our and community food pantries, and those requesting food assistance has almost doubled in the last two years. We also are working with clients to sign them up for SNAP, which is a slow and cumbersome process in this state. We believe much more can be done to help the food insecure in this state.

"Hunger and poverty are not about staggering statistics -- they are issues rooted in the struggles they cause for our neighbors, our friends and community members. We are participating in the food challenge to remind ourselves of this fact -- that behind each $1.40 meal there is a human face, a human body yearning for sustenance…"

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