State policy and action news

The American Academy of Dermatology Association (AADA) is constantly working with state dermatology societies and state legislatures to introduce, support, or oppose bills that could affect your practice. Use the links below to read AADA comments about issues that matter to you and your patients.

2014

Alabama

The Alabama legislature has passed legislation that restricts minors under the age of 14 from indoor tanning unless prescribed by a physician. The legislation will now go to Alabama Gov. and dermatologist Robert J. Bentley, MD, to sign into law. The bill also stipulates that minors 16 or 17 years old will need to obtain written consent, signed at the tanning facility, from a parent or legal guardian. Minors 15 years old can only use a tanning device if a parent or legal guardian provides written consent signed at the tanning facility and the parent or legal guardian who signed the written consent is present in the facility during the operation of the device.

California

The AADA and CalDerm successfully opposed legislation in California, Senate Bill 1215, that would have eliminated the in-office ancillary services exception that allows physicians to provide anatomic pathology services within their offices. Read the AADA's letter of opposition. The bill was voted down by the California Senate Business, Professions, and Economic Development Committee.

Connecticut

Cosmetic tax

Connecticut legislators have reintroduced a bill from 2013 that would repeal the sales tax on cosmetic medical procedures. Current Connecticut law deems cosmetic medical procedures as taxable, but exempts reconstructive surgery from the tax. Because the distinction between cosmetic and reconstructive surgery is not always clear, the AADA argues that such a tax not only invades patient privacy and is difficult to administer, but could cost the state more revenue than it generates from the tax.

Scope of practice

The Connecticut House of Representatives approved Senate Bill 36 which would allow advanced practice registered nurses to diagnose and treat patients without a physician's supervision. The measure was proposed by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy; therefore he is expected to sign it into law. The AADA sent a letter in opposition to Senate Bill 36.

Delaware

Delaware passes indoor tanning ban for minors

Governor Jack Markell has signed a bill into law that bans minors under the age of 18 from indoor tanning. The law will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2015. The AADA was involved in a grassroots effort to encourage passage of this legislation. Read the letter of support for Senate Bill 94 sent from the AADA and the Delaware Academy of Dermatology

Indoor tanning

Gov. Jack Markell has signed a bill into law that bans minors under the age of 18 from indoor tanning. The law will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2015. The AADA and the Delaware Academy of Dermatology sent a letter of support for Senate Bill 94.

Biosimilars

Delaware Gov. Jack Markell signed a bill into law that authorizes pharmacists to substitute biosimilars for biologic drugs and to notify the practitioner of the substitution within ten days of dispensing. The AADA sent a letter to Gov. Markell opposing the bill, SB 118. The AADA argued that this extended notification provision could be detrimental to patient safety, and that notification should occur by the time of dispensing.

 

Hawaii

Gov. Neil Abercrombie has signed into law legislation that bans indoor tanning for minors under the age of 18. The law is effective immediately. The AADA sent letters of support to both the Hawaii House and Senate. Also, read the AADA's letter of support to the House Committee on Judiciary.

Idaho

The AADA sent a letter to the Idaho Board of Pharmacy opposing its proposed regulation to allow for the substitution of biosimilars without physician notification. In accordance with the proposal, pharmacists would be authorized to substitute biosimilars for biologic drugs without notifying the health care provider. While the AADA applauds the cost benefits that might occur from the use of biosimilars, it points out that substituting a biosimilar absent the medical judgment of the patient’s prescribing physician could be detrimental to patient safety. In its letter,the AADA explains that manufacturing a biosimilar is more complex than manufacturing generics for other drugs. Because biologics are manufactured in living organisms, biosimilars are not exact replications of their reference biologic products. Due to this variability, a patient’s response to a biosimilar may not always mirror the response to the reference drug. Even minor changes in the manufacturing process can significantly affect the efficacy of the biosimilar.

Illinois

The AADA has sent a letter to the Health Care Licenses Committee opposing HB 3645, which would inappropriately license the alternative health care practice of naturopathy. The AADA argued that patients would be misled to believe a naturopath, authorized to identify oneself as a “doctor of naturopathy” “naturopathic doctor” or “doctor of naturopath”, has completed a residency program that is comparable in scope and duration to that of a physician. Patient safety will be compromised if naturopaths are authorized to perform the same procedures that dermatologists spend years in medical training to perform.

Indiana

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence has signed legislation into law that would restrict minors under the age of 16 from indoor tanning. Read a letter from the AADA urging Gov. Pence to sign the bill into law. In January, the Indiana legislature introduced this bill, Senate Bill 50. The Indiana Academy of Dermatology and American Academy of Dermatology Association sent a letter in support of the bill to the chair of the Senate Health and Provider Services Committee, as well as a letter to State Senator and President Pro Tempore David Long.

Iowa

Marta Van Beek, MD, FAAD, testified in support of new legislation in Iowa, SF 2174, that would restrict minors under the age of 18 from indoor tanning in Iowa. The AADA supports legislation restricting minors under the age of 18 from indoor tanning.

Kansas

The AADA has sent a letter in support of indoor tanning legislation in Kansas. The bill, HB 2435, would prohibit minors under the age of 18 from using indoor tanning equipment. The bill further imposes fines on tanning salon operators who violate the age restrictions.

Kentucky

The American Academy of Dermatology Association sent a letter in support of Kentucky House Bill 310, which would protect minors under the age of 18 from indoor tanning. Read the AADA letter of support.

Louisiana

Louisiana has passed a law that bans minors under the age of 18 years old from using indoor tanning devices. Louisiana is the ninth state that has instituted a ban on indoor tanning for minors under 18. Read more.

Maryland

Indoor tanning

The Maryland House of Representatives and Senate has voted down legislation that would restrict minors under the age of 18 from indoor tanning. The AADA sent a letter in support of the bill, and among the panels of legislation supporters, several AAD members testified in favor of the legislation. The AADA sent a letter in support of HB 310 under-18 indoor tanning legislation in Maryland.

Scope of practice

Maryland lawmakers are considering legislation that would expand the scope of practice of naturopathy to include the practice of dermatology. Services would include phototherapy, the repair and care of superficial lesions, the removal of foreign bodies located in the superficial tissues, and the dispensing, ordering, or administering of nonprescription drugs transdermally. Additionally, House Bill (HB) 402 would license naturopaths and create a State Board of Naturopathic Medicine. The American Academy of Dermatology Association (AADA) has opposed this bill, citing concerns over patient safety and quality of care. Read more from the AADA’s letter opposing HB 402.

Massachusetts

In a joint letter sent to the Speaker of the Massachusetts House of Representatives, the AADA and the Massachusetts Academy of Dermatology (MAD) supported SB 1904 that prohibits minors under the age of 16 from using indoor tanning devices. They relayed their concerns about the frequent patronage of indoor tanning facilities by adolescents, citing the documented increased risk of developing skin cancer resulting from such activities. Read the letter of support for Senate Bill 1904.

Minnesota

Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton has signed a bill into law that protects minors from the dangers of indoor tanning. Minnesota joins Vermont, California, Illinois, Oregon, Nevada, Texas and Washington by passing legislation that prohibits minors under the age of 18 from indoor tanning. The law will go into effect on Aug. 1, 2014. Read more.

Nebraska

Scope of practice
The governor of Nebraska vetoed legislation that would have expanded nurse practitioners' scope of practice. This legislation would have eliminated integrated practice agreements between advanced practice registered nurses (APRN) and physicians, effectively authorizing them to practice independently. The AADA submitted a letter in opposition to the legislation.

Indoor tanning
The AADA issued a letter of support for Nebraska bill, LB 132, which - as introduced - would protect minors under the age of 16 from indoor tanning. Read the AADA letter of support. However, the bill was amended to only require parental consent for minors under 16 to indoor tan. The new language passed and was signed into law by Gov. Dave Heineman.

New York

Truth-in-advertising legislation in New York could help set the record straight by providing patients with necessary information about who is providing their health care. SB 5493 would require that all advertisements for health care services identify the type of professional license and board certification, if applicable, held by the health care professional. In addition, it would require all health care professionals to wear a name tag that clearly identifies the type of license held during all patient encounters. The AADA sent a letter of support for this bill. This bill has passed out of committee.

Pennsylvania

The Pennsylvania Senate passed biosimilars bill SB 405 by a vote of 44-6. SB 405 would require any pharmacist who dispenses an interchangeable biosimilar to inform the patient prior to dispensing the biosimilar, provide notification of the substitution to the prescriber no later than 72 hours after dispensing, and record the brand name or the product name and name of the manufacturer of the biosimilar on the record of dispensing and the prescription label. The AADA worked with the Pennsylvania Academy of Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery (PAD) to develop and send a letter of support

Gov. Tom Corbett has signed legislation into law that bans minors age 16 and younger from using tanning facilities and requires 17-year-olds to have written parental consent. The AADA sent a letter to Pennsylvania Lieutenant Governor Jim Cawley in support of the bill.

Tennessee

The Tennessee legislature has passed medical spa bill, SB2033/HB1896, the “Tennessee Patient Safety Cosmetic Procedures Act”, which includes an amendment that requires all health care professionals to identify or disclose their degree or field of study, board-certification (if any) and licensure to each patient. The AADA, ASDSA, and the Tennessee Dermatology Society successfully advocated for this amendment to be included in the final bill. Read the letter of support. The bill is expected to be signed into law and will be effective July 1, 2014.

Texas

The AADA, American Society for Dermatologic Surgery Association, Texas Dermatological Society, and AIM at Melanoma have teamed up to oppose recommendations in the June 2014 Sunset Advisory Commission Staff Report - to the Texas Department of State Health Services - that would eliminate enforcement of indoor tanning bed facility regulations in Texas. Currently, Texas does not allow minors under the age of 18 to tan at indoor tanning facilities. The groups argued that removing the enforcement mechanism for this law will harm the public despite the plethora of information warning the public of the risks associated with indoor tanning. Additionally, the Staff Report’s recommendation will erase any recent progress since the enactment of the under-18 law by signaling to salons that teens can use their facilities without repercussion. Read the letter of opposition.

Utah

Utah Gov. Gary R. Herbert has signed a bill into law that would require health care providers to wear identification during any patient encounter that includes one’s name and license. Additionally, it would be unprofessional for a health care provider to engage in deceptive or misleading conduct, which includes any affirmative communication or representation that falsely states, describes or holds out an individual’s licensure, training, education or profession.The AADA sent a letter in support of Senate Bill 132. The law goes into effect on Jan. 1, 2015.

Washington

AADA and other stakeholders oppose naturopaths seeking expanded scope in Washington

The AADA, the Washington State Dermatology Society, and the Washington State Medical Association, among other specialties, submitted a letter in opposition to an application by the naturopaths to expand their scope of practice to prescribe Schedule II-V controlled substances. The primary reason for opposing the Sunrise Review is that naturopaths lack sufficient substantive pharmacological and other training to enable them to safely prescribe these controlled substances. Moreover, expandingthe authority of insufficiently trained professionals to provide these dangerous substances poses an unnecessary risk to the public without increasing access to adequate care.

 


 
The AADA sent a letter to the Senate Committee on Commerce & Labor in support of this legislation, Senate Bill 6065.


The AADA, the Washington State Dermatology Society, and the Washington State Medical Association, among other specialties, submitted a letter in opposition to an application by the naturopaths to expand their scope of practice to prescribe Schedule II-V controlled substances.

West Virginia

Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin has signed a bill into law that would require employees of health care providers to wear an identification badge when providing direct patient care. The identification badge, including one’s licensure, would be worn in a conspicuous manner so as to be visible and apparent.The AADA sent a letter to West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin urging his support of Senate Bill 602. The law goes into effect on June 4, 2014.