FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
5/29/2014
FOR INFORMATION, CONTACT:
John Maszinski
Office: 312-580-6440
E-mail:johnmaszinski@isms.org
S.B. 2187 - Significant biomedical education and clinical training, supervision requirements added.

Chicago, IL - The Illinois State Medical Society (ISMS) and Illinois Psychiatric Society (IPS) have today taken a neutral position on recently amended legislation to allow Illinois clinical psychologists limited prescribing authority.

"SB 2187 as amended hardly resembles the original bill proposed by the clinical psychologists," said ISMS President William A. McDade, MD, PhD. "The amended legislation includes significant mandatory biomedical education and clinical training requirements. These elements were completely absent from the original clinical psychologists' proposal."

Dr. McDade said further, "the biomedical education and clinical training additions would bring a prescribing clinical psychologist's training up to a similar level as physician assistants, who may prescribe medication under the supervision of a physician. To ensure patient safety, the new bill requires regular, ongoing physician oversight and guidance of any clinical psychologist who wants to prescribe."

"From the very beginning, patient safety was our number one priority. With these new protections and training requirements, we have a strong piece of legislation that ensures patient safety throughout all of Illinois," stated IPS President James MacKenzie, DO. "This agreement is a huge win for patients."

To ensure patient protection and quality of care, the following education, training and practice restrictions are now central to the bill:

  • Undergraduate prerequisite biomedical coursework similar to the prerequisites for entry to physician assistant training programs.
  • An additional 60 credit hours of graduate didactic biomedical coursework.
  • A full time 14-month supervised clinical training practicum, which includes rotations in nine common medical specialty areas.
  • Permanent oversight through a required written collaborative agreement with a physician who treats mental illness and disease.
  • Under the following circumstances, clinical psychologists will not be able to prescribe if:
    • The patient is under age 17 or over age 65, or
    • The patient is pregnant, or
    • o The patient has any serious medical condition, developmental disability or intellectual disability.
  • Clinical psychologists will not be able to prescribe benzodiazepines, narcotics or any Schedule II controlled substances.

These changes represent significant improvement over the minimal training requirements contained in the psychologists' original prescribing proposal, and were absolutely necessary for our organizations to move to a neutral stance on the bill.

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Founded in 1840, ISMS is a professional membership association representing Illinois physicians in all medical specialties, and their patients, statewide. Dr. McDade is an anesthesiologist practicing in Chicago.


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