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Changes to Physician Assistant Statutes in Florida

Client Alert

In the last year, there have been many changes to the scope of practice and collaboration/supervision requirements for advanced practice providers such as APRNs and physician assistants in the state of Florida.  In a previous Client Alert we discussed House Bill 607, which expanded the autonomous practice of APRNs providing primary care services in Florida.

This Client Alert focuses on Florida House Bill 431 (the “Bill”), which went into effect on July 1, 2021 and amended Florida Statutes 458.347 and 459.022. The Bill essentially gives Florida PAs more autonomy in certain aspects of their practice, and changes the number of PAs that physicians are permitted to supervise from four (4) to ten (10).

The Florida Board of Medicine published the comprehensive list of all of the changes made, and among those, PAs are no longer required to notify patients that they have the right to see a physician before prescribing or dispensing prescriptions, and they are able to authenticate any document that may also be authenticated by physicians, with the exception of physician certifications (which includes, but is not limited to, death certificates, school physical exams, and medical examinations for workers’ compensation claims).

Additionally, PAs are no longer required to notify the Department of Health in writing when any changes are made to their supervising physician or within thirty (30) days of employment, and are permitted to supervise medical assistants.

As for changes in prescribing, PAs no longer need to include a prescribing number on prescriptions, but instead must include their name, address, and phone number, along with the name of each of their supervising physicians. Additionally, a formulary that lists prescriptions PAs are not allowed to prescribe will be published, and PAs can now prescribe 14-day supplies of Schedule II psychotropic drugs to minors, provided they are supervised by a pediatrician, family practice physician, internal medicine physician, or psychiatrist.

The Board of Medicine also noted the following changes from the Bill:

  • Amends provisions related to program approval for the education and training of PAs and allows trainees to perform medical services rendered within the scope of an approved program;
  • Amends the licensure requirements for PAs based on the date a PA graduated from an approved program as defined in the bill by specifying which PA education and training programs are approved for PA licensure;
  • Authorizes a PA to satisfy the continuing education requirement on controlled substance prescribing through a designated course; and
  • Removes the requirement that PA licensure applicants seeking prescribing authority provide course transcripts.

If you have any questions about any of the specific changes or additions to Florida Statutes 458.347 and 459.022, and how they are applicable to you and your practice, please contact Amanda Waesch at alwaesch@bmdllc.com.


Valley National Bank/Trulieve Loan: A Big Step Out of the Shadows

In a late December press release, Trulieve announced that it had secured a $71.5 million commercial bank loan. In addition to the amount of the loan, which may be the largest commercial bank loan to date to a cannabis company, the release prominently identified Valley Bank and featured both a quote from Valley’s Senior Vice President, John Myers, and a description of the Bank’s service platform and commitment to the cannabis industry.

The End of Non-Competes? The Impact It Will Have on the Healthcare Industry

On January 5, 2023, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) announced a proposed rule that, if enacted, will ban employers from entering into non-compete clauses with workers (the “Rule”), and the Rule would void existing non-compete agreements. In their Notice, the FTC stated that if the Rule were to go into effect, they estimate the overall earnings of employees in the United States could increase by $250 billion to $296 billion per year. The Rule would also require employers to rescind non-competes that they had already entered into with their workers. For purposes of the Rule, the FTC has defined “worker” to also include any employees, interns, volunteers, and contractors.”

2022 Healthcare Recap and 2023 Healthcare Check-Up

As the country begins to return to a new “normal” following the COVID-19 pandemic, there are many healthcare rules changing on both the federal and state levels as a result. Thus, it is important for healthcare providers and their employers to be aware of these changing rules, and any implications they may have on their practice. Look back on healthcare in 2022 and find a checklist for 2023.

Direct Support Professional Retention Payments

On December 15, the Ohio Senate and House passed House Bill 45, which authorizes the Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD), in conjunction with the county boards of developmental disabilities, to launch their initiative to issue retention payments to Direct Support Professionals (DSPs). These retention payments will be distributed quarterly to participating home and community-based waiver providers to address the workforce crisis in the direct provider sector. Governor DeWine needs to sign the Bill to begin the payments, but he is expected to do so by the end of 2022.

Real Estate Investors Position for 2023 Opportunities

Real estate investors weathered another year in a post-pandemic world, with the year closing with yet another interest rate increase coupled with both uncertainty and heightened interest carrying into 2023. Just last Wednesday, the Federal Reserve raised its benchmark interest rate 0.50 percentage points, shifting the target range to 4.25% to 4.50%. The new level is the highest the fed funds rate has been since December 2007 and marks the seventh rate hike this year. So what does this mean to investors, brokers, lenders, and others in the real estate world? Read a few perspectives below from stakeholders familiar with our BMD clients and the markets in which they do business.