Advocacy Update

Aug. 23, 2018: State Advocacy Update


The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has released a Spanish translation of the updated Opioid Overdose Prevention Toolkit. The toolkit is a free resource which offers strategies to health care providers, communities and local governments to help develop practices and policies that prevent opioid-related deaths.

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Resources in the toolkit are specifically tailored for interdisciplinary collaboration and can be used by community members, prescribers, patients and families as well as those recovering from opioid overdose.

The AMA is pleased to release new public opinion survey data to support the AMA "Truth in Advertising" (TIA) campaign, which is designed to ensure health care providers clearly and honestly state their level of training, education and licensing.

To ensure patients know which "doctor" is providing their care, the AMA model law, the Health Care Professional Transparency Act:

  • Requires all health care professionals to clearly and accurately identify themselves in all writings, advertisements and other communications.
  • Requires all health care professionals to wear, during patient encounters, a name tag that clearly identifies the type of license they hold.
  • Prohibits advertisements or websites advertising health care services from including deceptive or misleading information.

The new TIA survey results confirm that patients:

  • Remain confused about who is a medical doctor or doctor of osteopathic medicine.
  • Strongly prefer that a physician perform certain medical procedures.
  • Overwhelmingly support legislation to ensure clarity and transparency in health care advertising.
  • Agree that only licensed medical doctors or doctors of osteopathic medicine should be able to use the title "physician."

Full survey results are available for download. Also available for download is an updated TIA campaign booklet including survey results, model legislation, a template op-ed, talking points and descriptions of the 21 laws adopted since the inception of the campaign.

Please contact AMA Senior Legislative Attorney Kristin Schleiter ([email protected]) for more information about the AMA Truth in Advertising campaign and for support in passing the Health Care Professional Transparency Act in your state.

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is hosting two regional one-day Practitioner Diversion Awareness Conferences (PDAC) on Sept. 29 and 30. The diversion of pharmaceutical controlled substances is a growing problem and the PDAC aims to assist physicians and other health care professionals in identifying and preventing diversion activity. This is a free event, but physicians who want to attend must have a DEA registration to prescribe, administer or dispense controlled substances in West Virginia.

Topics covered include:

  • Methods of diversion and effective controls for controlled substances.
  • Disposal, return of patient meds, and options for patients.
  • Prescriptions for controlled substances.
  • The opioid epidemic and the practice of legitimate medicine.

The conferences will be held at the Charleston Marriott Town Center in Charleston, West Virginia. Attendees will receive a certificate from the Federation of State Medical Boards which they can redeem for continuing medical education credit.