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Scope Expansion on Front Burner - Legislative Update from Springfield
Posted on: 3/14/2014

Psychologists want to prescribe psychotropic drugs

S.B. 2187 is dangerous legislation that would allow psychologists to prescribe psychotropic drugs.

Many organizations, including mental health patient advocacy groups, physicians, clinical psychologists, hospitals and pharmacists, remain strongly opposed to legislation supported by a small group of psychologists that would grant them prescriptive authority without meeting minimal biomedical education and training requirements.

A practicing clinical psychologist who opposes his own profession's efforts to practice medicine wrote a letter to the editor. His insights form a persuasive argument why any legislation allowing psychologists to prescribe poses significant risks to patients.

ISMS is opposed to S.B. 2187 or other legislation that would allow psychologists to prescribe drugs.

Dentists want to provide immunizations

S. B. 3409 and Amendment 1, and H.B. 5574 would allow dentists to provide certain immunizations, including those for human papillomavirus (HPV), hepatitis B, influenza and shingles to individuals over the age of 10. 

ISMS encourages patients to have access to a medical home, and this legislation will take them away from that medical home and prevent coordinated care. 

This bill will not increase access to immunizations. With the shortage of dentists in Illinois, dentists should instead focus on access issues to dentistry and patients should see medical professionals for immunizations. Furthermore, very few dentists are contracted or authorized with health plans or Medicare to provide immunizations. 

With little or no experience, dentists' ability to implement a vaccination program, retain documentation and communicate with the patient's primary care physician is also in question.

What these well-intended but unworkable bills will do is severely harm the move toward integrated care as sought by the Affordable Care Act, Medicare and Medicaid. 

Read ISMS' white paper on S.B. 3409.
Read ISM's white paper on H.B. 5574.

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