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FTC releases comments on West Virginia APRN legislative proposal

By Mark Iandolo | Feb 17, 2016

CHARLESTON, West Virginia (Legal Newsline) — Staff from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has released comments on the competitive impact of a legislative proposal that would modify the supervision requirements imposed on advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) in West Virginia.

The legislative proposal would allow some APRNs, under limited conditions, to write prescriptions without approval from a supervising physician. Regulation of certain APRNs would also move under the authority of the West Virginia Board of Medicine or Board of Osteopathy.

“[The proposal] could benefit patients, as it would permit a route to independent prescribing, at least for some APRNs under certain conditions,” the comments state, but it “raises significant competitive concerns nonetheless, first because of the many conditions and exclusions it would impose on independent APRN prescribing, and second because of the regulatory conflicts of interest that appear to be inherent in the bill’s requirements of physician permission for and oversight of APRN prescribing.”

Comments further note the requirement that an APRN have a recommendation from his or her collaborative physician raises concerns about professional and financial conflicts of interest.

FTC staff urges the legislature to consider whether this is necessary to ensure patient safety.

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