State Legislation

We are fighting on the front line at the Statehouse in battles involving practice regulation, Medicaid reimbursement, BWC compensation, tort reform and HMO/insurance company regulation to name a few. These areas of your practice are controlled by the states, not the federal government.

Latest News

Senate Passes Osteopathic Recognition Month Bill

The Ohio Senate today passed HB 352, designating April as "Osteopathic Medicine Recognition Month in Ohio," by a vote of 29 -0. The bill is now headed to Governor Kasich for his signature.

OOA Weighs In On Medicinal Marijuana

The Ohio Osteopathic Association's testimony as "an interested party" was written by Darren J. Sommer, DO. OOA did not take a position on whether medicinal marijuana should be legalized or not. Instead, the testimony focused on three issues that would put physicians at risk, if the state of Ohio chooses to move forward with legalization.

OU-HCOM Health Policy Day Promotes Civility

After breakfasts with legislators, the students joined nearly 500 first and second year students on all three campuses to hear presentations by guest speakers originating from Athens and Columbus.

OOA Advocates for Step Therapy Legislation

Companion bills introduced in the Ohio House and Senate do not prohibit step therapy, but establish conditions for its use. Reps. Terry Johnson, DO (R-Portsmouth) and Rep. Nickie Antonio (D-Lakewood) are joint sponsors of HB 443.

DO, Osteopathic Medical Student Testify Against HB 216

The Ohio House of Representatives Health & Aging Committee heard testimony, Feb.10, from doctors and staff representing a coalition of physician associations opposed to House Bill 216. The proposed legislation would eliminate the requirement for Advanced Practice Registered Nurses, Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists and Certified Mid-Wives, to collaborate with a physician and expand their scope of practice.

Ohio Issues Acute Pain Prescribing Guidelines

The new guidelines address short-term acute pain from injuries, or surgical and dental procedures that is expected to resolve within 12 weeks. Cynthia S. Kelley, DO, of Akron; Cleanne Cass, DO, of Dayton; and Mark N. Malinowski, DO, of Chillicothe, helped to write the guidelines, which specifically mention osteopathic neuromusculoskeletal medicine as an alternative to opioids.

Medical Marijuana Takes Center Stage at the Statehouse

Speaker of the House Cliff Rosenberger has appointed a 15-member task force of legislators, legal, medical and law enforcement officials to help the legislature decide what to do about medical marijuana. At the same time the Ohio Senate will hold town hall meetings in three cities.

Debate Continues on APRN Scope of Practice Legislation

A panel of APRNs supporting the bill testified, Jan. 20. Prior to the hearing, the OOA, in collaboration with other medical associations, sent a joint-letter to members of the Committee making it clear that the physician organizations are opposed to the current legislation and existing substitute drafts, but committed to working with the sponsor, State Rep. Dorothy Pelanda, to resolve issues of concern.

GME Study Committee Submits Report to Legislators

The Graduate Medical Education Study Committee, created by the Ohio General Assembly earlier this year, has completed its work and transmitted its recommendations to the legislature. The

Legislators Set to Return to Columbus in Mid-January

The Ohio General Assembly adjourned, December 8, and legislators won’t return to the Statehouse until January 20, 2016. Since 2016 is a major election year, the legislative process will be interrupted by primaries in the Spring and the Presidential election in the Fall, followed by a "lame duck" session in December .

DO-Legislator Wants to Designate April as Osteopathic Medicine Month

State Rep. Terry Johnson, DO (R-McDermott) introduced HB 352 to designate April as “Osteopathic Medicine Recognition Month” in honor of the significant contributions made by the osteopathic field of medicine to improve the health of Ohioans.

TEAMS WORK: HB 216 Undercuts Coordinated Care

Statewide Coalition to Protect Patients

The OOA and other state physician organizations have launched a campaign to educate legislators and the general public about the dangers of HB 216 and how it will undermine team-based care and endanger patients. The bill allows advance practice nurses to practice without a collaboration agreement with a physician.

Kasich Announces Plan to Maximize OARRS Use

Goal is to Integrate OARRS with EHRs

The state will make up to a $1.5M annual investment to enable prescribers and dispensers to automatically check past opiate history within the same system they use day-to-day.

Ohio DO Testifies at Statehouse Committee

Voices Support for New Initiative to Prevent Opioid Abuse

OOA Member Elizabeth B. Lottes, DO, of Columbus, testified, October 7, before the Ohio House Health and Aging Committee in support of HB 248. The bill would require health insurance companies to cover the cost of opioid pain medications formulated with abuse deterrent properties.

HHS Names Transforming Clinical Practice Grant Recipients

Ohio's Application Fails to Make the Final Cut

Thirty nine proposals were funded nationally. A group of Ohio organizations, including the Ohio Osteopathic Association, submitted a TCPI application through the Ohio Health Information Partnership, but the proposal did not make the final cut for funding.

Health Department Releases New Drug Abuse Data

Report Shows Alarming Increase In Deaths Due to Fentanyl

New statistics released by the Ohio Department of Health, Sept 24, show some positive trends in Ohio’s fight against prescription drug abuse, but an alarming increase in deaths due to fentanyl, which is 30 to 50 times more potent than heroine.

Two Columbus DOs Advocate for Abuse Deterrent Opioids

Both Urge Quick Passage of HB 248

The physicians joined two legislators at a Statehouse press conference to mandate insurance companies to pay for abuse deterrent versions of addictive pain medications.

Marijuana Backers Clash With Legislators

Ballot Language Challenged in the Ohio Supreme Court

Issue 3 would provide for 10 Marijuana Growth, Cultivation and Extraction (MGCE) facilities. Cultivation of medical and retail marijuana and production of marijuana-infused products would only be permitted to take place at the 10 MGCE facilities. The Ohio Legislature was especially critical of this section of the initiative, and has initiated Issue 2 in opposition.

OOA Member Testifies Before House Healthcare Efficiencies Study Committee

Barreiro stresses importance of funding community based programs

Barreiro also discussed the need to train culturally competent primary care physicians, focusing on population health.

Infant Mortality Commission Begins Work

Medicaid Targets Zip Codes with Highest Mortality Rates

According to statistics from the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services, Ohio ranks 45th in overall infant mortality. The state’s rate of infant mortality for black babies (13.57) was second highest nationally for the 39 states where a rate could be calculated.

Governor Signs Biennial Budget; Legislature Adjourns for Summer

Has good news and bad news for Medicaid

The final budget has a slight increase in reimbursement for Medicaid payments to primary care physicians, that is still well below Medicare rates; but a cut in reimbursement for dual eligibles from Medicare to Medicaid levels.

ODH Posts Concussion Education Tools Online

The web site contains valuable resources for players, parents, coaches, referees, and physicians. In addition to materials specifically required HB 143, the site also contains a list of frequently asked questions, fact sheets for coaches and parents, and CDC diagnosis and management educational articles for physicians. Click here to visit the web site: www.healthyohioprogram.org/concussion .

Physician Groups Voice Concern

Working in collaboration with other physician associations, the OOA sent a letter to all members of the Ohio Senate to oppose an amendment requiring health insuring corporations to directly contract with APNs as primary care providers.

Work on Budget Bill Continues

OOA Supports Private Insurance Market Proposals