Prohibits the investigation of any claim of medical professional misconduct based solely on treatment that is not universally accepted by the medical profession.
Ayes (59): Addabbo, Avella, Ball, Bonacic, Boyle, Breslin, Carlucci, DeFrancisco, Diaz, Dilan, Farley, Felder, Flanagan, Gallivan, Gianaris, Gipson, Griffo, Grisanti, Hannon, Hassell-Thomps, Hoylman, Kennedy, Klein, Krueger, Lanza, Larkin, Latimer, LaValle, Libous, Little, Marcellino, Marchione, Martins, Maziarz, Montgomery, Nozzolio, O'Brien, O'Mara, Parker, Peralta, Perkins, Ranzenhofer, Ritchie, Rivera, Robach, Sampson, Sanders, Savino, Serrano, Seward, Skelos, Smith, Squadron, Stavisky, Stewart-Cousins, Tkaczyk, Valesky, Young, Zeldin
Excused (2): Espaillat, Golden
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the public health law, in relation to the identification, charging, reporting and investigation of charges of professional misconduct by health care professionals
PURPOSE: To ensure that the Office of Professional Medical Conduct (OPMC) shall not identify, investigate, or charge a practitioner based solely on their recommendation or provision of a treatment modality that is currently not universally accepted by the medical community
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section one of the bill amends Section 230 of the public health law by adding a new subdivision 9-b to ensure that neither the board for professional medical conduct nor the office of professional medical conduct shall identify, charge, or cause a report made to the director of such office to be investigated based solely upon the recommendation or provision of a treatment modality by a licensee that is not universally accepted by the medical profession, including but not limited to, varying modalities used in the treatment of Lyme disease and other tick-borne diseases.
Section two of the bill provides for an immediate effective date.
In New York State, the Office of Professional Medical Conduct (OPMC) is charged with ensuring that appropriate medical care is given to all New York residents, through the investigation and prosecution of professional misconduct by physicians, physician assistants and specialist assistants. Because the medical profession is one that continually evolves with scientific breakthroughs, it is important that the OPMC maintains a flexible, case-specific, investigations policy - particularly where new treatments and acceptance by the medical community do not align.
This has been relevant to concerns raised regarding the investigation of alternative medical treatment of Lyme and tick-borne disease with modalities not universally accepted by the medical community. As the debate surrounding acceptable protocols continues, it is important that the State takes a treatment-neutral approach where possible in order to ensure that medical professionals remain the discerning voice in defining appropriate medical care. To that end, recognizing that the determination of appropriate diagnosis and treatment on a case-by-case basis is a responsibility solely held by a medical professional, it is also critical to ensure that bodies such as the OPMC do not inadvertently endorse or preclude innovative treatments with rules that may dissuade medical professionals from pursuing new methods.
In a memo dated June 15, 2005, the Director of the Office of Professional Medical Conduct "memorialized and endorse(d)" these very principles. The memo, circulated to the staff members of the OPMC advised that so long as a treatment modality effectively treats a medical condition, within certain specifications, its recommendation or provision cannot, by itself, constitute professional misconduct.
Thus, the determination of effective and appropriate treatment remains in the hands of the proper entity, the medical professional. As such, this legislation codifies the existing policy of the OPMC to clarify that the OPMC shall not identify, investigate, or charge a practitioner based solely on their recommendation or provision of a treatment modality that is currently not universally accepted by the medical community.
No fiscal implications.
This act shall take effect immediately.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 7854 IN SENATE June 14, 2014 ___________Introduced by Sen. HANNON -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Rules AN ACT to amend the public health law, in relation to the identifica- tion, charging, reporting and investigation of charges of professional misconduct by health care professionals THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Section 230 of the public health law is amended by adding a new subdivision 9-b to read as follows: 9-B. NEITHER THE BOARD FOR PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL CONDUCT NOR THE OFFICE OF PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL CONDUCT SHALL IDENTIFY, CHARGE, OR CAUSE A REPORT MADE TO THE DIRECTOR OF SUCH OFFICE TO BE INVESTIGATED BASED SOLELY UPON THE RECOMMENDATION OR PROVISION OF A TREATMENT MODALITY BY A LICENSEE THAT IS NOT UNIVERSALLY ACCEPTED BY THE MEDICAL PROFESSION, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO, VARYING MODALITIES USED IN THE TREATMENT OF LYME DISEASE AND OTHER TICK-BORNE DISEASES. AS USED IN THIS SUBDIVI- SION THE TERM "LICENSEE" SHALL MEAN A PHYSICIAN, PHYSICIAN'S ASSISTANT, AND SPECIALIST'S ASSISTANT. WHEN A LICENSEE, ACTING IN ACCORDANCE WITH PARAGRAPH E OF SUBDIVISION FOUR OF SECTION SIXTY-FIVE HUNDRED TWENTY-SEVEN OF THE EDUCATION LAW, RECOMMENDS OR PROVIDES A TREATMENT MODALITY THAT EFFECTIVELY TREATS HUMAN DISEASE, PAIN, INJURY, DEFORMITY OR PHYSICAL CONDITION, THE RECOMMENDATION OR PROVISION OF THAT MODALITY SHALL NOT, BY ITSELF, CONSTITUTE PROFESSIONAL MISCONDUCT. THIS PROHIBI- TION SHALL NOT EXONERATE SUCH LICENSEE FROM OTHERWISE APPLICABLE PROFES- SIONAL REQUIREMENTS. S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD15605-01-4