The preceding file is the staff summary of comments received by the Joint Commission on Health Care (JCHC) on the options spelled out in the Staff Report on SB865 prior to the comment deadline of 6 October.
Approximately 150 genealogists or genealogical societies (and others) provided comments in the two week period for which comments were open. The majority of comments supported not further restricting access to vital records, but to expand public access.
The letter from the Virginia Department of Health found at pp.17-19 of the attachment represents the most interesting support for lengthening the period for all closed records, urges keeping “immediate family” disclosure only in place, and says that effective November 1, 2011, Virginia’s death records will no longer appear in the Social Security Death Index.
Although the comments subject to staff analysis had to be received prior to 6 October 2011, the Virginia Genealogical Society will be encouraging letters to the Senators and delegates making up the JCHC prior to the next meeting of the full Commission now set for 22 November. Specific suggestions for the content of your letters will be provided by a separate post to this blog.