BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — The common practice of billing rape victims for their medical exams should come to an end under changes to Louisiana law given final passage by state lawmakers.
The two bills by Rep. Helena Moreno, a New Orleans Democrat, now move to the desk of Gov. Bobby Jindal after unanimous votes Tuesday from the House. Jindal supports the legislation.
One bill forbids hospitals from charging victims for the exams. Another redirects unclaimed gambling winnings to a crime victims board to reimburse hospitals for costs of gathering DNA evidence, screening for sexually transmitted diseases and pregnancy testing.
The measures are part of a package of bills sponsored by Moreno and New Orleans Sen. J.P. Morrell aimed at improving the handling of sexual assault in Louisiana.
House Bills 835 and 143: www.legis.la.gov