PIERRE, S.D. (KELO) — The South Dakota Legislature hasn’t allowed certified professional midwives to give epinephrine to a pregnant woman during or immediately after delivery. The Legislature’s Rules Review Committee is sticking with that position.
The legislative committee on Tuesday rejected a proposal from the state Board of Certified Professional Midwives to allow midwives to administer epinephrine. It was one of the new rules the board sent forward last month to the committee for final clearance.
Tamera Weis, the board’s secretary, said the board members chose to pursue the epinephrine rule under what she described as “implied authority.”
The Legislature’s code counsel, John McCullough, had told the board by letter before the board’s April 21 hearing that epinephrine was outside the medications that midwives can legally give to patients. He repeated that position Tuesday.
Epinephrine is commonly used in response to severe allergic reactions.
Senator Jean Hunhoff, R-Yankton, said the epinephrine rule shouldn’t proceed. A retired registered nurse, she said lawmakers took a similar position with emergency medical technicians regarding epinephrine. The Legislature subsequently authorized EMTs to provide it.
“I just want to be consistent,” said Hunhoff, who chairs the committee. She warned against allowing an exception because others would want exceptions too.
Representative Kevin Jensen, R-Canton, agreed with Hunhoff. Jensen said it was “a technicality” but noted that state laws contain many technicalities.
Senator Timothy Johns, R-Lead, said the Legislature hasn’t allowed midwives to administer epinephrine. “In this case there is no statutory authority,” the retired circuit judge said.