FRANKFORT, KY | MARCH 28, 2020
The Kentucky Academy of Physician Assistants (KAPA) thanks Governor Beshear for swiftly signing a HB 135 into law, authorizing Kentucky PAs (physician assistants) to prescribe Schedule III-V controlled medications.
The law will take effect on July 14th of 2020, per the Kentucky constitution 90 days after the General Assembly adjourns. Physician Assistants may not begin prescribing controlled substances until the law becomes effective. This timeline will give the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure time to write the necessary administrative regulations around prescriptive authority and granting access to the Kentucky All Scheduled Prescription Electronic Reporting system, also known as KASPER. Under the new law PAs will also be required to have 10 hours of continuing medical education related to controlled substance diversion, pain management, addiction disorders, and use of KASPER. KAPA is developing resources for PAs to be able to get those hours ahead of the effective date of the law.
This is a significant achievement for patients and the profession in the state, as laws that restrict PA prescriptive authority can cause interruptions in the delivery of care. If a patient seen by a PA requires medication that state laws prohibit the PA from prescribing, then both patient and clinician are forced to take extra steps to ensure the patient receives the medication, which can result in additional costs to the system.
“During this time, our state needs to empower all healthcare providers to do everything they can for patients and keep healthcare teams working together as efficiently as possible. Giving PAs the authorization to prescribe Schedule III-V controlled medications updates Kentucky’s laws to be more consistent with PA prescriptive authority in other states and removes an outdated, unnecessary barrier to patient care,” KAPA President Laurie Garner, PhD, PA-C, said.