Amended: the Seven-Day Opioid Bill
This week, MCMS & MedChi convinced a key House sub-committee to take recommendations on the Governor's seven-day opioid bill. The amended version allows medical professionals to follow "best practice" standards. We thank our members and lobbyists for hard work in advocating for this change. We still have more work to do.
"Together We Are Stronger": House of Medicine Thwarts Efforts of Optometrists
The House of Medicine came together to oppose the scope of practice expansion desired by optometrists in this session of the Maryland Assembly.
The Maryland Society for Eye Physicians & Surgeons, and MedChi, together with MCMS and other component societies on their respective lobby days, explained to legislators that HB807/SB611 as proposed by optometrists would have patient safety implications as these bills, if passed, would give optometrists enhanced scope of practice including the prescribing of controlled substances and other oral medications, independent treatment of glaucoma, ordering of independent tests and testing in the office setting, removal of foreign bodies and use of all FDA approved therapeutic agents and devices. Often, non-physician groups are using the argument that their enhanced scope of practice is necessary to provide "access" to all individuals. In this case, 80% of Marylanders have access to appropriately-trained ophthalmologists with in a 10-minute drive.
The result of these successful, coordinated lobbying efforts was that neither bill advanced and there will be further summer study on these initiatives of the optometrists to expand their practice.
This is a win for patients, and it's a win for all physicians.
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