What We Are Watching at the Ohio Statehouse
Ohio ACEP is following a number of legislative issues related to the practice of emergency care in the state of Ohio.
Bill to Strengthen Prudent Layperson Law Introduced!
The American College of Emergency Physicians, Ohio Chapter (Ohio ACEP) applauds the introduction of HB 270 to strengthen Ohio’s prudent layperson law. No Ohioan should be put in the position of self-diagnosing a medical emergency for fear of non-coverage by their insurance company. Many emergency conditions have symptoms that require a specialized medical exam to establish a diagnosis. Ohio’s emergency departments have unique hours, 24-7-365, to be there for our communities when they need us most. Ohioans shouldn’t delay needed emergency care. If you are having chest pain, it is reasonable to seek emergency care, even if your final diagnosis may not be a heart attack.
Ohio ACEP President Dr. Ryan Squier states: "We are privileged to take care of members of our community in times when an Emergency arises. These instances are unscheduled and unpredictable for our patients. So much of what we are privileged to do is of a time sensitive nature, and we would never want a patient delaying care for fear of what their healthcare coverage may or may not cover. This bill is about protecting Ohioans access to care, and we are in strong support of protecting the health of our friends, families, and communities."
Ohio ACEP thanks Representatives Susan Manchester and Terrence Upchurch for taking up this important patient protection initiative. We look forward to advocating for the bill’s passage to protect our patients.
APRN Bill is Back Again
Representative Tom Brinkman, along with freshmen lawmaker Jennifer Gross (who is also an APRN) have introduced legislation regarding the standard care arrangements for Advanced Practice Registered Nurses.
House Bill 211 would only require a standard care arrangement for an APRN until they have 2000 hours or 12 months of clinical practice AND they could have their arrangement with another APRN who has already met the 2000 hours or 12-month threshold. Ohio ACEP has opposed similar proposals for years. We remain committed to protecting patients and ensuring high quality, physician led emergency care in Ohio.
Medical Licensure Compact Legislation Clears Ohio Senate
Senators Kristina Roegner and Dr. Steve Huffman are sponsoring Senate Bill 6 to enter Ohio into the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact. Over half of the states have already passed legislation to enter the Compact. Ohio ACEP has lent their support to SB 6. In addition to Ohio ACEP, supportive testimony was submitted by the Ohio State Medical Association, the Ohio Hospital Association, several other medical specialty societies and a few hospital systems. This bill passed the Ohio Senate by a vote of 32-1 and will now be considered by the Ohio House of Representatives.
Stroke Legislation Moving Quickly
Senate Bill 21 is the reintroduction of legislation that would direct the State Board of Emergency Medical, Fire and Transportation Services to develop guidelines for the assessment, triage and hospital transport of stroke patients. The medical director or cooperating physician advisory board of each EMS organization would establish their written protocols based on that model. Under the legislation, medical directors or cooperating physician advisory boards must also periodically provide training in the assessment and treatment of stroke patients. That training must address the assessment of stroke severity.
The Senate has already unanimously passed HB 21 and it is now pending before the House Transportation and Public Safety Committee.
Bill Would Eliminate Written Prescription
Representatives Al Cutrona and Gail Pavliga have introduced House Bill 193 to remove the ability to write a prescription for schedule II drugs. All schedule II drug would need to be dispensed using an electronic prescription. The bill allows for oral scripts to be communicated in an emergency, but physicians would no longer be allowed to write hard copy prescriptions should this bill pass. Ohio ACEP is working with other medical organizations and the bill sponsors to ensure written prescriptions can still be utilized in certain circumstances.
EMS Dementia Training
Representatives Phil Plummer and Thomas West have introduced House Bill 23 to require EMS personnel to undergo training in dementia. The training would be a part of all EMS training programs and approved CE programs. The amount of dementia training would need to be at least 2 hours for the training programs and 1 hour for the CE programs. The legislation also specifies 7 areas of instruction that the training must include. This legislation has been favorably passed by the House of Representatives and will now be considered by the Ohio Senate.
Physician Non-Compete Clause Legislation
Senate Bill 150 has been introduced by Senator Dr. Terry Johnson and Senator Sandra Williams. The bill would prohibit the use of noncompete provisions in physician employment contracts. This legislation will be considered by the Senate Small Business and Economic Opportunity Committee.