Recent Advocacy Report
The OOS advocacy team is closely monitoring the Ohio legislature during the lame duck session that will continue until the end of the year. It is one of the busiest times of the legislative calendar as any legislation that doesn’t pass by the end of the year must be reintroduced in the next the General Assembly in 2023.
Of note, we are closely following H.B. 509 that provides numerous changes to licensure and licensure boards. Specifically, the current version alters the optometry licensure process extended the period of licensure to two years (similar to medical licensure) and consolidating three different licensure classes into one. None of these changes impact the current scope of practice of optometrists in Ohio. Additionally, the language eliminates the licensure requirement for opticians. The legislation continues to have hearings and we anticipate formal action on it before the session is over. While no scope expansion is being considered now, we do anticipate legislation next year that will revise the optometric practice act.
As more information is available in 2023 we will let you know. Also, plan on attending the 2023 OOS Annual Meeting in Columbus on February 25 for a complete update on OOS advocacy activities at the state level.
The American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), the American Medical Association and other national and state medical and specialty societies continue to push Congress to pass legislation before the end of the year that would avert significant cuts to the Medicare fee schedule. If you haven’t already, please be sure to contact your member of congress and ask them to pass H.R. 8800 Supporting Medicare Provider Act of 2022.