GCMB addresses medical assistants, naloxone & 2017 General Assembly

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The Georgia Composite Medical Board distributed the following newsletter on December 30…

The role of medical assistants

The Georgia Composite Medical Board regularly receives inquiries from the general public concerning the use of medical assistants in a practice setting and what role these individuals can play as part of a patient's health care team.

At the December meeting, a consumer requested the Board’s response to the question of whether medical assistants are allowed to simply administer (and not read) tuberculosis skin tests by intradermal injection. In reviewing the statutes and rules associated with this inquiry (O.C.G.A. § 43-34-44 and Rule 360-3-.05), it states that it is permissible for medical assistants to administer subcutaneous and intramuscular injections when properly delegated authority and under proper supervision. Therefore, the Board issued guidance stating a medical assistant is permitted to administer TB skin tests by intradermal injection when properly delegated the authority to do so and while properly supervised. However, the Board cautioned that a medical assistant is not permitted to read or interpret the tests.

If you have a question for the Board to consider, please submit your inquiry to medbd@dch.ga.gov.

Gov. Deal expands access to emergency tool to help fight opioid epidemic

Earlier this month, Gov. Nathan Deal provided an additional tool that will expand access to a life-saving drug to stem the tide of the opioid epidemic. In a request to the Georgia Pharmacy Board, Gov. Deal asked that naloxone, an emergency drug used to reverse opioid overdoses, be removed from the dangerous drug list and rescheduled as a Schedule V exempt drug. The Georgia Board of Pharmacy approved the emergency rule to remove naloxone. At the same time, Gov. Deal directed the Department of Public Health to issue a standing order to allow naloxone to be dispensed over-the-counter by pharmacists across the state

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The 2017 legislative session to begin in January

The Georgia General Assembly will convene on January 9, 2017, for the start of the year's legislative session. The state House of Representatives and state Senate meet in regular session on the second Monday in January for no longer than 40 legislative (rather than calendar) days each year. All bills passed by both legislative chambers during the 40 days are sent to the governor for his signature or veto. As a state agency, the Georgia Composite Medical Board follows this process closely, as many bills passed by these lawmakers and signed by the governor have a direct impact upon the Board and its activities.

To stay informed about the legislative process or to find contact information for your lawmakers, please visit the Georgia General Assembly's website by clicking here