Sickle Cell Advisory Committee


In 2015, the Texas Legislature amended Texas Government Code, Section 531.012 and directed the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) Executive Commissioner to establish and maintain advisory committees to address major health and human services issues and to adopt rules to govern each advisory committee’s purpose, tasks, reporting requirements, and abolition date. In June 2016, the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) adopted rules under Texas Administrative Code, Section 37.420, to establish and govern the Sickle Cell Advisory Committee (committee). The committee had seven members appointed by the HHSC Executive Commissioner. Texas Administrative Code, Section 37.420 required the committee to meet three times a year, recommend specific strategies to raise public awareness of sickle cell disease and sickle cell trait, and file recommendations in an annual report with the Texas Legislature. DSHS abolished the committee on September 1, 2018, in accordance with Texas Administrative Code, Section 37.420.

In August 2018, in an effort to continue the work of the committee, the DSHS Commissioner added two new members to the Newborn Screening Advisory Committee in positions representing the sickle cell community.

In 2019, the Texas Legislature amended Texas Health and Safety Code, Chapter 50 to direct the HHSC Executive Commissioner to establish and maintain the Sickle Cell Task Force to study and advise the department on implementing the recommendations made in the 2018 Sickle Cell Advisory Committee Report. In 2021, the Texas Legislature redesignated Health and Safety Code, Chapter 50, to Health and Safety Code, Chapter 52.