KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Calif. Lawmakers Advance Nurse Practitioner, Pharmacist Scope-Of-Practice Bills

The legislation will likely rally opposition over care quality concerns, even as the nurse bill loses a key supporter.

Los Angeles Times: Bills On Nurse Practitioners, Pharmacists Advance In Assembly
Measures that would expand the roles of nurse practitioners and pharmacists advanced in the Assembly on Tuesday, setting the stage for a fierce lobbying battle in the session's final weeks. Both measures wade into the so-called scope of practice debate over what type of medical care can be administered by non-physicians, setting off a turf war between doctors and other medical providers (Mason, 8/13).

Los Angeles Times: Bill To Curb Prescription Overdose Deaths Gains In Assembly
A bill aimed at beefing up California's prescription drug monitoring system so that it can be better used to track drug abusing patients and recklessly prescribing physicians emerged from an Assembly committee Monday on a unanimous vote. The bill by Sen. Mark DeSaulnier (D-Concord), which was backed by Atty. Gen. Kamala D. Harris, was approved 14 to 0 by members of the Assembly Committee on Business, Professions and Consumer Protection. The bill is next scheduled for consideration by the Assembly Appropriations Committee (Glover, 8/13).

California Healthline: Nurse Practitioner Bill Loses Supporter After 'Drastic' Last-Minute Amendments
An amended bill that would modify the role of nurse practitioners in California is expected to be voted on [Tuesday] by the Assembly Committee on Business, Professions and Consumer Protection. [Tuesday's] vote -- which is supposed to be taken without discussion -- has been complicated by the withdrawal of support from one its previous endorsers. The American Association of Retired Persons switched its "support" position to "oppose" yesterday for SB 491 by Sen. Ed Hernandez (D-West Covina) after amendments were introduced that AARP officials said would gut the bill. "Basically now it says nurse practitioners may not supplant a physician, and doing that would be a crime. We have a real problem with that," said Blanca Castro, advocacy director for AARP (Gorn, 8/13).

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