Title 23
Health and Safety

Chapter 13
Maternal and Child Health Services for Children with Special Health Care Needs

R.I. Gen. Laws § 23-13-26

§ 23-13-26. Technology-dependent children — Definitions — Caretakers’ skills.

(a) For the purposes of this section, the following definitions apply:

(1) “Advanced skills” means familiarity and current experience with the following:

(i) Pediatric intensive care assessments skills;

(ii) Ventilator and respirator equipment;

(iii) Maintenance in oxygen therapy and pulse oximeter equipment;

(iv) Tracheostomy care — daily and emergency care;

(v) Respiratory suctioning and maintenance of suctioning equipment;

(vi) Administration of respiratory treatment and chest therapy;

(vii) Gastrostomy and naso-gastric care and gavage/pump feedings;

(viii) Administration and familiarity of multiple cardio—pulmonary medications; and

(ix) Basic life support certification and periodic recertification.

(2) “Medical devices or equipment” include, but are not limited to, the following:

(i) Respirator;

(ii) Tracheostomy;

(iii) Oxygen;

(iv) Naso-gastric or gastrostomy tube;

(v) Indwelling catheter;

(vi) Intravenous device;

(vii) Total parenteral nutritional support; and

(viii) Peritoneal or hemodialysis.

(3) “Technology-dependent children” means:

(i) Children who have severe, chronic disabilities attributable to a mental or physical impairment or combination of mental and physical impairments, which disability is manifested before the person attains the age of twenty-two (22), is likely to continue indefinitely, results in substantial functional limitations in three (3) or more of the following areas of major life activity:

(A) Self-care;

(B) Receptive and expressive language;

(C) Learning;

(D) Mobility;

(E) Self-direction;

(F) Capacity for independent living; or

(G) Economic self-sufficiency; and

(ii) Who requires medical devices or equipment to compensate for the chronic, persistent reduction or absence of a vital body function.

(b) Certified school nurse teachers, as defined in § 16-21-8, who provide direct care for technology-dependent children shall have advanced skills which include, but are not limited to, those skills in subsection (a)(1) of this section.

(c) The specific guidelines for the care of technology-dependent children in schools shall be included in the rules and regulations issued jointly by the director of the department of health and the board of regents for elementary and secondary education under the provisions of U.S. Public Law 108-446, 20 U.S.C. § 1400 et seq., and chapter 24 of title 16 as part of the school health program.

(d) Nothing in § 16-11-2 shall be construed to prevent the board of regents from promulgating regulations requiring certified nurse teachers who provide direct care for technology-dependent children to obtain the advanced skills required under this section.

(e) The obligation of a school district to provide the services set forth in this section shall be determined in accordance with other applicable state and federal laws and regulations.

History of Section.
P.L. 1992, ch. 340, § 1; P.L. 2008, ch. 475, § 42.