SEC. 41-59-5. Establishment and administration of program.
(1) The State Board of Health shall establish and maintain a program for the improvement and regulation of emergency medical services (hereinafter EMS) in the State of Mississippi. The responsibility for implementation and conduct of this program shall be vested in the Executive Officer of the State Board of Health (hereinafter executive officer) along with such other officers and boards as may be specified by law or regulation.
(2) The board shall provide for the regulation and licensing of public and private ambulance service, inspection and issuance of permits for ambulance vehicles, training and certification of EMS personnel, including drivers and attendants, the development and maintenance of a statewide EMS records program, development and adoption of EMS regulations, the coordination of an EMS communications system, and other related EMS activities.
(3) The board is authorized to promulgate and enforce such rules, regulations and minimum standards as needed to carry out the provisions of this chapter.
(4) The board, on recommendation of the executive officer, shall appoint an EMS director who shall have basic responsibility for development and administration of the state EMS program and plan, and for administration of rules and regulations promulgated pursuant to this chapter.
(5) The board is authorized to receive any funds appropriated to the board from the Emergency Medical Services Operating Fund created in Section 41-59-61 and is further authorized, with the Emergency Medical Services Advisory Council acting in an advisory capacity, to administer the disbursement of such funds to the counties, municipalities and organized emergency medical service districts and the utilization of such funds by the same, as provided in Section 41-59-61.
(6) The State Board of Health is authorized to purchase a liability and property damage insurance policy on each training vehicle utilized by its Emergency Medical Services (EMS) program to cover any liability for injury to persons and property caused by the negligence of any duly authorized employee of the State Department of Health while operating such vehicle in the performance of his official duties or by trainees while operating such vehicle in the course of training. Any such policy shall be written by the agent or agents of a company authorized to do and doing business in the State of Mississippi. Insurance premiums on any such policy shall be paid as are other expenses of the department. The policy of insurance shall contain a provision to the effect that the insurance company shall make no plea of the sovereign immunity doctrine.
The department may be sued by anyone affected by the operation of the training vehicles of the EMS program which are covered by such liability insurance, to the extent of such insurance carried on the vehicle involved. However, immunity from suit is only waived to the extent of such liability insurance carried, and a judgment creditor shall have recourse only to the proceeds or right to proceeds of such liability insurance. No attempt shall be made in the trial of any case to suggest the existence of any insurance which covers in whole or in part any judgment or award rendered in favor of a claimant, but if the verdict rendered by the jury exceeds the limit of applicable insurance, the court on motion shall reduce the amount of the judgment, as against the department only and not as to joint tort-feasors, if any, to a sum equal to the applicable limit stated in the insurance policy.
This subsection (6) shall stand repealed from and after July 1, 1993, by operation of law.
(7) The State Department of Health, Division of Emergency Medical Services, acting as the lead agency, in consultation with and having solicited advice from the EMS Advisory Council, shall develop and submit to the Legislature a plan for the triage, transport and treatment of major trauma victims that at minimum addresses the following:
(a) The magnitude of the trauma problem in Mississippi and the need for a statewide system of trauma care;
(b) The structure and organization of a trauma care system for Mississippi;
(c) Pre-hospital care management guidelines for triage and transportation of major trauma victims;
(d) Trauma system design and resources, including air transportation services, and provision for interfacility transfer;
(e) Guidelines for resources, equipment and personnel within facilities treating major trauma victims;
(f) Data collection and evaluation regarding system operation, patient outcome and quality improvement;
(g) Public information and education about the trauma system;
(h) Medical control and accountability;
(i) Confidentiality of patient care information;
(j) Cost of major trauma in Mississippi; and
(k) Research alternatives and provide recommendations for financial assistance of the trauma system in Mississippi, including, but not limited to, trauma system management and uncompensated trauma care.
SOURCES: Laws, 1974, ch. 507, Sec. 3; 1982, ch. 344, Sec. 2; 1989, ch. 545, Sec. 1; 1991, ch. 597, Sec. 1; 1992, ch. 491 Sec. 27, eff from and after passage (approved May 12, 1992).