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AB-156 Optometrists: endorsement fee.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 01/15/2020 09:00 PM
AB156:v98#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  January 15, 2020

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 156


Introduced by Assembly Member Voepel

January 07, 2019


An act to add Chapter 5.48 (commencing with Section 2548) to Division 2 of the Business and Professions Code, relating to eye care. An act to amend Section 3152 of the Business and Professions Code, relating to healing arts.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 156, as amended, Voepel. Eye care: remote assessment. Optometrists: endorsement fee.
The Optometry Practice Act provides for the licensure and regulation of the practice of optometry by the State Board of Optometry, which is within the Department of Consumer Affairs. Existing law requires various fees for purposes of the act, and requires those moneys to be deposited in the Optometry Fund.
This bill would establish an endorsement fee of $50, and would authorize the board to increase the fee to not more than $100.

Existing law restricts to a physician and surgeon licensed by the Medical Board of California or optometrist licensed by the State Board of Optometry the power to prescribe ophthalmic devices, including spectacle or contact lenses. Existing law establishes standards for spectacle lens and contact lens prescriptions. Existing law prohibits any person other than licensed physicians and surgeons, licensed optometrists, or registered dispensing opticians from dispensing, selling, or furnishing prescription lenses, except as provided in the Nonresident Contact Lens Seller Registration Act.

This bill would prohibit a person from operating an assessment mechanism to conduct an eye assessment or to generate a prescription for contact lenses or visual aid glasses to a patient at a California residence unless prescribed requirements are met. The bill would define “assessment mechanism” to mean an automated or virtual equipment, application, or technology designed to be used on a telephone, a computer, or an internet-based device that may be used either in person or remotely to conduct an eye assessment and includes artificial intelligence devices and any equipment that is used to perform an eye assessment. The bill would define other terms for its purposes. The bill would prohibit a person from operating an assessment mechanism to conduct an eye assessment or generate a prescription to a California patient that is under 18 years of age or to a California patient that has not received an in-person comprehensive eye health examination by an optometrist or physician and surgeon within the previous 24 months. The bill would require that the evaluation, treatment, and consultation recommendations by a licensed optometrist or physician and surgeon utilizing an assessment mechanism be held to the same standards of appropriate practice as those in traditional in-person clinical settings. The bill would make a knowing violation of these provisions subject to civil penalties and enforceable by the Attorney General.

Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 3152 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

3152.
 The amounts of fees and penalties prescribed by this chapter shall be established by the board in amounts not greater than those specified in the following schedule:
(a) The fee for applicants applying for a license shall not exceed two hundred seventy-five dollars ($275).
(b) The fee for renewal of an optometric license shall not exceed five hundred dollars ($500).
(c) The annual fee for the renewal of a branch office license shall not exceed seventy-five dollars ($75).
(d) The fee for a branch office license shall not exceed seventy-five dollars ($75).
(e) The penalty for failure to pay the annual fee for renewal of a branch office license shall not exceed twenty-five dollars ($25).
(f) The fee for issuance of a license or upon change of name authorized by law of a person holding a license under this chapter shall not exceed twenty-five dollars ($25).
(g) The delinquency fee for renewal of an optometric license shall not exceed fifty dollars ($50).
(h) The application fee for a certificate to perform lacrimal irrigation and dilation shall not exceed fifty dollars ($50).
(i) The application fee for a certificate to treat glaucoma shall not exceed fifty dollars ($50).
(j) The fee for approval of a continuing education course shall not exceed one hundred dollars ($100).
(k) The fee for issuance of a statement of licensure shall not exceed forty dollars ($40).
(l) The fee for biennial renewal of a statement of licensure shall not exceed forty dollars ($40).
(m) The delinquency fee for renewal of a statement of licensure shall not exceed twenty dollars ($20).
(n) The application fee for a fictitious name permit shall not exceed fifty dollars ($50).
(o) The renewal fee for a fictitious name permit shall not exceed fifty dollars ($50).
(p) The delinquency fee for renewal of a fictitious name permit shall not exceed twenty-five dollars ($25).
(q) The fee for a retired license shall not exceed twenty-five dollars ($25).
(r) The fee for a retired license with volunteer designation shall not exceed fifty dollars ($50).
(s) The biennial renewal fee for a retired license with volunteer designation shall not exceed fifty dollars ($50).
(t) The application fee for a certificate to administer immunizations shall not exceed fifty dollars ($50).
(u) The application fee for a home residence permit is fifty dollars ($50). The board may increase the fee to not more than one hundred dollars ($100).
(v) The renewal fee for a home residence permit is fifty dollars ($50). The board may increase the fee to not more than one hundred dollars ($100).
(w) The delinquency fee for a home residence permit is twenty-five dollars ($25). The board may increase the fee to not more than one hundred dollars ($100).
(x) The endorsement fee is fifty dollars ($50). The board may increase the fee to not more than one hundred dollars ($100).

SECTION 1.Chapter 5.48 (commencing with Section 2548) is added to Division 2 of the Business and Professions Code, to read:
5.48.Consumer Protection in Eye Care Act
2548.

This chapter shall be known as the Consumer Protection in Eye Care Act.

2548.1.

As used in this chapter:

(a)“Assessment mechanism” means automated or virtual equipment, application, or technology designed to be used on a telephone, a computer, or an internet-based device that may be used either in person or remotely to conduct an eye assessment and includes artificial intelligence devices and any equipment, electronic or nonelectronic, that is used to perform an eye assessment.

(b)“Contact lens” has the same meaning as described in Section 2541.

(c)“Diagnostic information and data” includes, but is not limited to, photographs and scans.

(d)“Eye assessment” means an assessment of the ocular health and visual status of a patient that may include, but is not limited to, objective refractive data or information generated by an automated testing device, including an autorefractor, in order to establish a medical diagnosis for the correction of vision disorders.

(e)“Person” means an individual, corporation, trust, partnership, incorporated or unincorporated association, and any other legal entity.

(f)“Prescription” means a handwritten or electronic order issued by a licensed optometrist or physician and surgeon, or an oral order issued directly by a licensed optometrist or physician and surgeon.

(g)“Seller” means an individual or entity that sells contact lenses or visual aid glasses and dispenses them to residents of this state in any manner.

(h)“Visual aid glasses” means eyeglasses, spectacles, or lenses designed or used to correct visual defects, including spectacles that may be adjusted by the wearer to achieve different types or levels of visual correction or enhancement. “Visual aid glasses” does not include optical instruments or devices that are any of the following:

(1)Not intended to correct or enhance vision.

(2)Sold without consideration of the visual status of the individual who will use the optical instrument or device, including, but not limited to, sunglasses that are designed and used solely to filter out light.

(3)Completely assembled eyeglasses or spectacles designed and used solely to magnify.

2548.2.

(a)A person shall not operate an assessment mechanism to conduct an eye assessment or to generate a prescription for contact lenses or visual aid glasses to a patient at a California residence, unless all of the following apply:

(1)Diagnostic information and data gathered by the assessment mechanism are read and interpreted by a licensed optometrist or physician and surgeon.

(2)The licensed optometrist or physician and surgeon can confirm the identity of the patient requesting treatment via the assessment mechanism.

(3)The assessment mechanism is approved by the federal Food and Drug Administration or any third party certification program endorsed by the Food and Drug Administration for the intended use.

(4)The assessment mechanism is designed and operated in a manner that provides any applicable accommodation required by the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (42 U.S.C. Sec. 12101 et seq.).

(5)The assessment mechanism and accompanying technology used for the collection and transmission of information and data gathers and transmits protected health information in compliance with the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-191).

(6)The procedure for which the assessment mechanism is used has a recognized Current Procedural Terminology code maintained by the American Medical Association.

(7)The assessment mechanism prominently displays the name and California state license number of the optometrist or physician and surgeon who will read and interpret the diagnostic information and data.

(8)The owner or lessee of the assessment mechanism maintains liability insurance in an amount adequate to cover claims made by individuals diagnosed or treated based on diagnostic information and data generated by the assessment mechanism.

(9)The assessment mechanism creates and maintains a medical record for each patient, which is for use during the ongoing treatment of a patient, and complies with all state and federal laws regarding maintenance and accessibility.

(10)There is simultaneous interaction between the patient and the licensed optometrist or physician and surgeon.

(11)The licensed optometrist or physician and surgeon utilizing an assessment mechanism provides a handwritten or electronic signature certifying their evaluation, treatment, prescription, or consultation recommendations of the patient.

(b)A person shall not operate an assessment mechanism to conduct an eye assessment or to generate a prescription to a patient under 18 years of age at a California residence.

(c)A person shall not operate an assessment mechanism to conduct an eye assessment or to generate a prescription to a patient at a California residence unless the patient has received an in-person comprehensive eye health examination by an optometrist or physician and surgeon within the previous 24 months.

(d)Evaluation, treatment, and consultation recommendations by a licensed optometrist or physician and surgeon utilizing an assessment mechanism as required in this section, including issuing a prescription via electronic means, shall be held to the same standards of appropriate practice as those in traditional in-person clinical settings.

2548.3.

A person that engages in a knowing violation of this chapter shall be subject to a civil penalty of not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000) for each violation. These civil penalties may be assessed and recovered through a civil action brought in the name of the people of the State of California by the Attorney General.