BATON ROUGE- August 16, 2011- State Board of Medical Examiners to Hold Hearing on Rule Regarding Physician Assistants
On Aug. 29th, the Louisiana State Board of Medical Examiners (LSBME) will hold a public hearing regarding a proposed rule that will limit the ability of physician assistants and their supervising physicians to work in a flexible manner.
Current law permits supervising physicians the authority to delegate medical services – those defined as national core competencies and those “beyond the competencies under specified conditions.”
The proposed rule details the specific services that may be performed only if the supervising physician is “physically next to the PA” and others that require the supervising physician to be “in the suite and available to be at the PA’s side within five minutes.” Additionally, the rule permits the LSBME to add other restrictions merely by advertising the new restrictions on the LSBME website.
The Louisiana Hospital Association (LHA) has voiced its opposition to the proposed rule. The LHA's position is that the LSBME cannot alter a statute by a rule and that such restrictions will "adversely impact the timing and quality of care in a state that is already underserved" according to the LHA's weekly newsletter.
On August 10th, the LHA sent a letter to the LSBME noting its opposition to the rule change and asking that the rule be withdrawn. The LHA's letter to the LSBME can be viewed here http://www.lhaonline.org/associations/3880/files/PA%20ltr%20w%20no%20stamp.pdf