PAs in Mississippi celebrated key improvements to their PA rules this spring when new regulations were adopted by the Mississippi State Board of Medical Licensure (MSBML). MSBML, the Mississippi State Medical Association, and the Mississippi Academy of PAs (MAPA), worked together to promote the revision. AAPA staff supported MAPA’s advocacy by preparing draft changes, position statements, and comprehensive research.
Despite significant interference by the National Commission on Certification of PAs (NCCPA) that put PA practice at risk in the state, the Illinois State Senate unanimously approved a 10-year extension of the Illinois PA Practice Act, which reflects the collaborative nature of PA practice and improves PA billing and ratio requirements.
New Mexico PAs will have greater autonomy due to the enactment of H.B. 215, which was signed into law by Gov. Susana Martinez on April 6, 2017. The legislation was the product of months of negotiations among the New Mexico Academy of PAs, the New Mexico Medical Board, the New Mexico Medical Society, and the Greater Albuquerque Medical Association. The bill, which goes into effect on June 6, 2017, makes several changes to PA practice in the state.
AAPA has been working diligently with our state chapters to advance PA-positive legislation. One of our primary areas of focus has been West Virginia where there has been overwhelming bipartisan support for improvements to the PA practice act.
Utah Gov. Gary Herbert recently signed SB 162 repealing the state’s requirement for PAs to have all chart entries that contain a Schedule II or III prescription co-signed by a physician. This bill is the result of the outstanding advocacy work of the Utah Academy of PAs (UAPA) who championed the bill as their legislative priority for 2017.
PAs in Mississippi will have greater impact on combating the opioid epidemic in their state as a result of two new laws enacted in mid-March: H.B. 996 and H.B. 1032. Like many states, Mississippi is working to address increased abuse of prescription opioids and heroin.
Virginia’s 2017 legislative session made significant strides for PAs in the state. Specifically, Senate Bill 1062/House Bill 1910 which will become effective on July 1, 2017. The new law adds PAs to the definition of “mental health service providers” who have a duty to act when a patient threatens violence or serious harm to a third party.