The State Legislature has concluded its 2019 Legislative Session. This was certainly one of the most memorable in recent years given the range of issues addressed following the democratic power-shifting election.
Be advised that we may be calling you to action during the summer to help secure vetoes from the Governor addressing the proliferation of e-scooters, e-bikes and unbalanced medical liability reforms.
NYSSOS wishes to thank our members who took the time to make phone calls, write letters and personally meet with legislators on this year's advocacy program. Every interaction matters and we will continue to address the orthopaedic community's concerns in the coming year. We are very proud of this year’s interactive advocacy day with the most attendees we’ve had in the past few years as well as those who participated in the federal visits.
We encourage you to reach out to your legislators and continue to build a relationship off session. You can always thank them for their efforts.
You may also contribute to the ORTHOPAC which supports candidates who understand the current and long-term challenges that orthopaedists face when practicing in New York.
At-A-Glance Orthopaedic Specific Issues
• Defeat of inappropriate scope expansions by podiatrists, chiropractors and physical therapists
• Defeat of efforts to impose a single payer system in NY
• Defeat of several mandates related to opioid prescribing that would have imposed even more requirements on physicians prior to prescribing opioids
• Defeat of numerous trial lawyer backed bills that would have: exponentially expanded awardable damages in wrongful death lawsuit; prohibited a defendant physician’s defense counsel from interviewing a medical malpractice plaintiff’s treating physician; and permitted the admissibility of certain “hearsay” statements of employees in civil actions. It should be noted that the Legislature did pass a couple of smaller measures opposed many groups that will affect certain cases involving multiple defendants and where an adverse judgment has been reached
• Advancement of efforts to license athletic trainers
• Passage of legislation to reduce insurer prior authorization (PA) requirements when a PA for a related procedure has already been received
Highlights on the behalf of the House of Medicine
• Enactment of legislation which ensures that medical contraindications are the only acceptable exception to vaccine requirements;
• Legislation that curtails health insurers making mid-year changes to their prescription formularies; or increasing patient cost sharing;
• Defeat of legislation which would have legalized adult use marijuana, as well as proposals that would have significantly expanded the medical marijuana program. Instead legislation was enacted that provides further “decriminalization” of small amounts of marijuana
• Defeat of the authorization of retail health clinics