State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > Georgia > Title-43 > Chapter-34 > Article-4 > 43-34-103

O.C.G.A. 43-34-103 (2010)
43-34-103. Application for assistant; number of assistants; new job descriptions; scope of duties; receipt of samples; employment by nonpracticing physicians; delegated authority; temporary practice agreements; assistance during public health emergencies; pronouncement of death.


(a) (1) In order to obtain licensure as a physician assistant, an applicant shall submit an application to the board. Such application shall include:

(A) Evidence submitted by the applicant of his or her good moral character; and

(B) Evidence of his or her competency in a health care area related to the job description which, as a minimum, shall include:

(i) Evidence of satisfactory completion of a training program approved by the board. If the applicant is not a graduate of an accredited school approved by the board, he or she shall be required to receive board approved refresher training and testing; and

(ii) Evidence that the applicant has passed the Physician Assistant National Certification Examination (PANCE) administered by the National Commission for the Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA), or its successor, or the National Association for the Certification of Anesthesia Assistants, (NACAA) or its successor.

The board may issue a temporary permit to any applicant for licensure who has satisfied the provisions of division (i) of this subparagraph and who is an applicant for the next available board approved or administered examination or who has completed this examination and is awaiting the results of such examination. The temporary permit shall expire upon notification of the applicant's failure to achieve a satisfactory score on the board approved or administered examination. A physician assistant licensed pursuant to this paragraph shall not be authorized to perform any medical acts of any sort except as approved for utilization by a physician in a job description pursuant to paragraph (2) of this subsection. The board may grant an inactive licensure status to a physician assistant who is licensed pursuant to this article but who is not practicing with the supervision of a board approved primary supervising physician.

(2) In order to obtain approval for the utilization of a physician assistant, whether the utilization is in a private practice or through a public or private health care institution or organization, the licensed physician who will be responsible for the performance of such physician assistant shall submit an application to the board which shall include:

(A) Evidence that the physician assistant is licensed pursuant to paragraph (1) of this subsection;

(B) A job description meeting the requirements of paragraph (4) of Code Section 43-34-102; and

(C) A fee, established by the board; provided, however, that no fee will be required if the physician assistant is an employee of the state or a county government.

(b) (1) No primary supervising physician shall have more than four physician assistants licensed to him or her at a time; provided, however, that no physician may supervise more than two physician assistants at any one time except as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection.

(2) (A) A physician may supervise as many as four physician assistants at any one time while practicing in a group practice in which other physician members of such group practice are primary supervising physicians.

(B) A physician may supervise as many as four physician assistants at any one time while acting as an alternate supervising physician:

(i) In an institutional setting such as a hospital or clinic;

(ii) On call for a primary supervising physician or a group practice; or

(iii) If otherwise approved by the board to act as an alternate supervising physician.

(3) A primary supervising physician shall designate in writing to the board such other physicians who may serve as an alternate supervising physician for each physician assistant licensed to such primary supervising physician. The board shall have authority to approve or deny such designations in whole or in part; provided, however, a physician may be listed as an alternate supervising physician for any number of physician assistants so long as he or she only supervises as many physician assistants at any one time as allowed by paragraph (2) of this subsection.

(c) (1) At all times while providing patient services, a physician assistant shall have a signed job description submitted by his or her primary supervising physician and approved by the board.

(2) Nothing in this article shall prevent a primary supervising physician from submitting to the board a new or amended physician assistant job description.

(d) A physician assistant is authorized to practice in those public or private places or facilities where the supervising physician or alternate supervising physician regularly sees patients, provided that nothing in this article shall prohibit the rendering of services to a patient by a physician assistant who is not in the physical presence of the supervising physician or preclude a physician assistant from making house calls, performing hospital duties, serving as an ambulance attendant, or performing any functions authorized by the supervising physician which the physician assistant is qualified to perform.

(e) A physician assistant may not be utilized to perform the duties of a pharmacist licensed under Chapter 4 of Title 26, relating to pharmacists.

(e.1) (1) In addition to and without limiting the authority granted by Code Section 43-34-23, a physician may delegate to a physician assistant, in accordance with a job description, the authority to issue a prescription drug order or orders for any device as defined in Code Section 26-4-5, or to issue any dangerous drug as defined in Code Section 16-13-71 or any Schedule III, IV, or V controlled substance as defined in Code Section 16-13-21 on a prescription drug order or prescription device order form as specified in paragraph (3) of this subsection. Delegation of such authority shall be contained in the job description required by this Code section. The delegating physician shall remain responsible for the medical acts of the physician assistant performing such delegated acts and shall adequately supervise the physician assistant. If an existing job description for a physician assistant does not contain such authority to order a prescription drug or device order as provided by this subsection, that physician assistant may not issue any such prescription drug or device order until a new job description delegating such authority is submitted to and approved by the board. Nothing in this Code section shall be construed to authorize the written prescription drug order of a Schedule I or II controlled substance.

(2) Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to create a presumption of liability, either civil or criminal, on the part of a pharmacist who is duly licensed under Title 26 and who in good faith fills a prescription drug or device order presented by a patient pursuant to this subsection. The pharmacist shall presume that the prescription drug or device order was issued by a physician assistant duly licensed under this article who has qualified under this Code section to prescribe pharmaceutical agents. The pharmacist shall also presume that the pharmaceutical agent prescribed by the physician assistant is an approved pharmaceutical agent, unless the pharmacist has actual or constructive knowledge to the contrary.

(3) The physician assistant shall only be authorized to exercise the rights granted under this subsection using a prescription drug or device order form which includes the name, address, and telephone number of the prescribing supervising or alternate supervising physician, the patient's name and address, the drug or device prescribed, the number of refills, and directions to the patient with regard to the taking and dosage of the drug. A prescription drug order which is transmitted either electronically or via facsimile shall conform to the requirements set out in paragraphs (1) and (2) of subsection (c) of Code Section 26-4-80, respectively. Any form containing less information than that described in this paragraph shall not be offered to or accepted by any pharmacist who is duly licensed under Title 26.

(4) The physician assistant or office staff shall notify the patient that the patient has the right to see the physician prior to any prescription drug or device order being issued by the physician assistant.

(5) Nothing in this Code section shall be construed to authorize a physician assistant to authorize refills of any drug for more than 12 months from the date of the original prescription drug or device order.

(6) A supervising physician or alternate supervising physician shall evaluate or examine, at least every three months, any patient receiving controlled substances.

(7) In addition to the copy of the prescription drug or device order delivered to the patient, a record of such prescription shall be maintained in the patient's medical record in the following manner:

(A) The physician assistant carrying out a prescription drug or device order shall document such order either in writing or by electronic means; and

(B) Except in facilities operated by the Division of Public Health of the Department of Community Health, the supervising physician shall review the prescription drug or device order copy and medical record entry for prescription drug or device orders issued within the past 30 days by the physician assistant. Such review may be achieved with a sampling of no less than 50 percent of such prescription drug or device order copies and medical record entries.

(8) A physician assistant is not permitted to prescribe drugs or devices except as authorized in the physician assistant's job description and in accordance with this article.

(9) The board shall adopt rules establishing procedures to evaluate an application for a job description containing the authority to order a prescription drug or device and any other rules the board deems necessary or appropriate to carry out the intent and purpose of this Code section or to protect the public welfare.

(10) Nothing in this Code section is intended to repeal any rules established by the board relating to the requirements and duties of physician assistants in remote practice sites.

(11) A physician assistant authorized by a primary supervising physician to order controlled substances pursuant to this Code section is authorized to register with the federal Drug Enforcement Administration.

(12) A physician assistant delegated the authority by the primary supervising physician to issue a prescription drug or device order shall be required to complete a minimum of three hours of continuing education biennially in practice specific pharmaceuticals in which the physician assistant has prescriptive order privileges.

A managed care system, health plan, hospital, insurance company, or other similar entity shall not require a physician to be a party to a job description as a condition for participation in or reimbursement from such entity.

(e.2) A physician assistant shall be allowed to request, receive, and sign for professional samples and may distribute professional samples to patients, pursuant to authority delegated by the supervising physician of that physician assistant. Delegation of such authority shall be contained in the job description required by this Code section; provided, however, the office or facility at which the physician assistant is working must maintain a list of professional samples approved by the supervising physician for request, receipt, and distribution by the physician assistant as well as a complete list of the specific number and dosage of each professional sample received and dispensed. In addition to the requirements of this Code section, all professional samples shall be maintained as required by applicable state and federal law and regulations. As used in this subsection, the term "professional samples" means complimentary doses of a drug, medication vouchers, or medical devices provided by the manufacturer for use in patient care.

(f) A physician employed by the Department of Community Health or by any institution thereof or by a local health department whose duties are administrative in nature and who does not normally provide health care to patients as such employee shall not be authorized to apply for or utilize the services of any physician assistant employed by the Department of Community Health or by any institution thereof or by a local health department.

(g) Nothing in this article shall be construed to prohibit a physician assistant from performing those acts the performance of which have been delegated to that physician assistant pursuant to and in conformity with Code Section 43-34-23.

(h) A physician and a physician assistant may enter into a temporary practice agreement exempt from any filing fees with the board by which agreement the physician supervises the services provided by the physician assistant to patients at a specific facility or program that provides medical services only to indigent patients in medically underserved or critical need population areas of the state, as determined by the board, or pursuant to Article 8 of Chapter 8 of Title 31, provided that:

(1) Such services are provided primarily to financially disadvantaged patients;

(2) Such services are free or at a charge to the patient based solely on the patient's ability to pay and provided, further, that such charges do not exceed the actual cost to the facility or program;

(3) The supervising physician and the physician assistant voluntarily and gratuitously donate their services;

(4) Prior to providing any patient services, a copy of the temporary practice agreement, signed by both the supervising physician and the physician assistant, is on file at the facility or program and is sent to the board;

(5) The temporary practice agreement is for a specified period of time, limits the services of the physician assistant to those within the usual scope of practice of the supervising physician, and is signed by both the supervising physician and the physician assistant prior to the physician assistant providing patient services; and

(6) The facility or program has notified the board of its intent to provide patient services and utilize licensed physicians and physician assistants under the conditions set out in this subsection.

(i) (1) Notwithstanding any provision of this article to the contrary, a physician assistant licensed pursuant to this article or licensed, certified, or otherwise authorized to practice in any other state or federal jurisdiction and whose license, certification, or authorization is in good standing who responds to a need for medical care created by conditions which characterize those of a state of emergency or public health emergency may render such care that the physician assistant is able to provide with such supervision as is available at the immediate scene or at the local site where such need for medical care exists or at a relief site established as part of a state or local safety plan established pursuant to Chapter 3 of Title 38. Such services shall be provided by a physician assistant in response to the request of an appropriate state or local official implementing a state or local emergency management plan or program, and in accordance with applicable guidelines established by such officials or plans. The authority granted by this Code section shall last no longer than 48 hours or such time as the board may establish under guidelines for supervision of the physician assistant rendering medical care.

(2) For the purposes of this subsection, the term "public health emergency" has the same meaning as in paragraph (6) of Code Section 38-3-3, and the term "state of emergency" has the same meaning as in paragraph (7) of Code Section 38-3-3.

(j) A physician assistant shall be allowed to make a pronouncement of death pursuant to authority delegated by the supervising physician of the physician assistant and to certify such pronouncement in the same manner as a physician.

(k) It shall be unlawful for a physician to be an employee of a physician assistant, alone or in combination with others, if the physician is required to supervise the physician assistant; provided, however, that this shall not apply to arrangements of this nature which were approved by the board on or before July 1, 2009. Arrangements approved prior to such date are nontransferable. Such conduct shall be subject to sanctions by the board as to the physician and the physician assistant.

State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > Georgia > Title-43 > Chapter-34 > Article-4 > 43-34-103

O.C.G.A. 43-34-103 (2010)
43-34-103. Application for assistant; number of assistants; new job descriptions; scope of duties; receipt of samples; employment by nonpracticing physicians; delegated authority; temporary practice agreements; assistance during public health emergencies; pronouncement of death.


(a) (1) In order to obtain licensure as a physician assistant, an applicant shall submit an application to the board. Such application shall include:

(A) Evidence submitted by the applicant of his or her good moral character; and

(B) Evidence of his or her competency in a health care area related to the job description which, as a minimum, shall include:

(i) Evidence of satisfactory completion of a training program approved by the board. If the applicant is not a graduate of an accredited school approved by the board, he or she shall be required to receive board approved refresher training and testing; and

(ii) Evidence that the applicant has passed the Physician Assistant National Certification Examination (PANCE) administered by the National Commission for the Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA), or its successor, or the National Association for the Certification of Anesthesia Assistants, (NACAA) or its successor.

The board may issue a temporary permit to any applicant for licensure who has satisfied the provisions of division (i) of this subparagraph and who is an applicant for the next available board approved or administered examination or who has completed this examination and is awaiting the results of such examination. The temporary permit shall expire upon notification of the applicant's failure to achieve a satisfactory score on the board approved or administered examination. A physician assistant licensed pursuant to this paragraph shall not be authorized to perform any medical acts of any sort except as approved for utilization by a physician in a job description pursuant to paragraph (2) of this subsection. The board may grant an inactive licensure status to a physician assistant who is licensed pursuant to this article but who is not practicing with the supervision of a board approved primary supervising physician.

(2) In order to obtain approval for the utilization of a physician assistant, whether the utilization is in a private practice or through a public or private health care institution or organization, the licensed physician who will be responsible for the performance of such physician assistant shall submit an application to the board which shall include:

(A) Evidence that the physician assistant is licensed pursuant to paragraph (1) of this subsection;

(B) A job description meeting the requirements of paragraph (4) of Code Section 43-34-102; and

(C) A fee, established by the board; provided, however, that no fee will be required if the physician assistant is an employee of the state or a county government.

(b) (1) No primary supervising physician shall have more than four physician assistants licensed to him or her at a time; provided, however, that no physician may supervise more than two physician assistants at any one time except as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection.

(2) (A) A physician may supervise as many as four physician assistants at any one time while practicing in a group practice in which other physician members of such group practice are primary supervising physicians.

(B) A physician may supervise as many as four physician assistants at any one time while acting as an alternate supervising physician:

(i) In an institutional setting such as a hospital or clinic;

(ii) On call for a primary supervising physician or a group practice; or

(iii) If otherwise approved by the board to act as an alternate supervising physician.

(3) A primary supervising physician shall designate in writing to the board such other physicians who may serve as an alternate supervising physician for each physician assistant licensed to such primary supervising physician. The board shall have authority to approve or deny such designations in whole or in part; provided, however, a physician may be listed as an alternate supervising physician for any number of physician assistants so long as he or she only supervises as many physician assistants at any one time as allowed by paragraph (2) of this subsection.

(c) (1) At all times while providing patient services, a physician assistant shall have a signed job description submitted by his or her primary supervising physician and approved by the board.

(2) Nothing in this article shall prevent a primary supervising physician from submitting to the board a new or amended physician assistant job description.

(d) A physician assistant is authorized to practice in those public or private places or facilities where the supervising physician or alternate supervising physician regularly sees patients, provided that nothing in this article shall prohibit the rendering of services to a patient by a physician assistant who is not in the physical presence of the supervising physician or preclude a physician assistant from making house calls, performing hospital duties, serving as an ambulance attendant, or performing any functions authorized by the supervising physician which the physician assistant is qualified to perform.

(e) A physician assistant may not be utilized to perform the duties of a pharmacist licensed under Chapter 4 of Title 26, relating to pharmacists.

(e.1) (1) In addition to and without limiting the authority granted by Code Section 43-34-23, a physician may delegate to a physician assistant, in accordance with a job description, the authority to issue a prescription drug order or orders for any device as defined in Code Section 26-4-5, or to issue any dangerous drug as defined in Code Section 16-13-71 or any Schedule III, IV, or V controlled substance as defined in Code Section 16-13-21 on a prescription drug order or prescription device order form as specified in paragraph (3) of this subsection. Delegation of such authority shall be contained in the job description required by this Code section. The delegating physician shall remain responsible for the medical acts of the physician assistant performing such delegated acts and shall adequately supervise the physician assistant. If an existing job description for a physician assistant does not contain such authority to order a prescription drug or device order as provided by this subsection, that physician assistant may not issue any such prescription drug or device order until a new job description delegating such authority is submitted to and approved by the board. Nothing in this Code section shall be construed to authorize the written prescription drug order of a Schedule I or II controlled substance.

(2) Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to create a presumption of liability, either civil or criminal, on the part of a pharmacist who is duly licensed under Title 26 and who in good faith fills a prescription drug or device order presented by a patient pursuant to this subsection. The pharmacist shall presume that the prescription drug or device order was issued by a physician assistant duly licensed under this article who has qualified under this Code section to prescribe pharmaceutical agents. The pharmacist shall also presume that the pharmaceutical agent prescribed by the physician assistant is an approved pharmaceutical agent, unless the pharmacist has actual or constructive knowledge to the contrary.

(3) The physician assistant shall only be authorized to exercise the rights granted under this subsection using a prescription drug or device order form which includes the name, address, and telephone number of the prescribing supervising or alternate supervising physician, the patient's name and address, the drug or device prescribed, the number of refills, and directions to the patient with regard to the taking and dosage of the drug. A prescription drug order which is transmitted either electronically or via facsimile shall conform to the requirements set out in paragraphs (1) and (2) of subsection (c) of Code Section 26-4-80, respectively. Any form containing less information than that described in this paragraph shall not be offered to or accepted by any pharmacist who is duly licensed under Title 26.

(4) The physician assistant or office staff shall notify the patient that the patient has the right to see the physician prior to any prescription drug or device order being issued by the physician assistant.

(5) Nothing in this Code section shall be construed to authorize a physician assistant to authorize refills of any drug for more than 12 months from the date of the original prescription drug or device order.

(6) A supervising physician or alternate supervising physician shall evaluate or examine, at least every three months, any patient receiving controlled substances.

(7) In addition to the copy of the prescription drug or device order delivered to the patient, a record of such prescription shall be maintained in the patient's medical record in the following manner:

(A) The physician assistant carrying out a prescription drug or device order shall document such order either in writing or by electronic means; and

(B) Except in facilities operated by the Division of Public Health of the Department of Community Health, the supervising physician shall review the prescription drug or device order copy and medical record entry for prescription drug or device orders issued within the past 30 days by the physician assistant. Such review may be achieved with a sampling of no less than 50 percent of such prescription drug or device order copies and medical record entries.

(8) A physician assistant is not permitted to prescribe drugs or devices except as authorized in the physician assistant's job description and in accordance with this article.

(9) The board shall adopt rules establishing procedures to evaluate an application for a job description containing the authority to order a prescription drug or device and any other rules the board deems necessary or appropriate to carry out the intent and purpose of this Code section or to protect the public welfare.

(10) Nothing in this Code section is intended to repeal any rules established by the board relating to the requirements and duties of physician assistants in remote practice sites.

(11) A physician assistant authorized by a primary supervising physician to order controlled substances pursuant to this Code section is authorized to register with the federal Drug Enforcement Administration.

(12) A physician assistant delegated the authority by the primary supervising physician to issue a prescription drug or device order shall be required to complete a minimum of three hours of continuing education biennially in practice specific pharmaceuticals in which the physician assistant has prescriptive order privileges.

A managed care system, health plan, hospital, insurance company, or other similar entity shall not require a physician to be a party to a job description as a condition for participation in or reimbursement from such entity.

(e.2) A physician assistant shall be allowed to request, receive, and sign for professional samples and may distribute professional samples to patients, pursuant to authority delegated by the supervising physician of that physician assistant. Delegation of such authority shall be contained in the job description required by this Code section; provided, however, the office or facility at which the physician assistant is working must maintain a list of professional samples approved by the supervising physician for request, receipt, and distribution by the physician assistant as well as a complete list of the specific number and dosage of each professional sample received and dispensed. In addition to the requirements of this Code section, all professional samples shall be maintained as required by applicable state and federal law and regulations. As used in this subsection, the term "professional samples" means complimentary doses of a drug, medication vouchers, or medical devices provided by the manufacturer for use in patient care.

(f) A physician employed by the Department of Community Health or by any institution thereof or by a local health department whose duties are administrative in nature and who does not normally provide health care to patients as such employee shall not be authorized to apply for or utilize the services of any physician assistant employed by the Department of Community Health or by any institution thereof or by a local health department.

(g) Nothing in this article shall be construed to prohibit a physician assistant from performing those acts the performance of which have been delegated to that physician assistant pursuant to and in conformity with Code Section 43-34-23.

(h) A physician and a physician assistant may enter into a temporary practice agreement exempt from any filing fees with the board by which agreement the physician supervises the services provided by the physician assistant to patients at a specific facility or program that provides medical services only to indigent patients in medically underserved or critical need population areas of the state, as determined by the board, or pursuant to Article 8 of Chapter 8 of Title 31, provided that:

(1) Such services are provided primarily to financially disadvantaged patients;

(2) Such services are free or at a charge to the patient based solely on the patient's ability to pay and provided, further, that such charges do not exceed the actual cost to the facility or program;

(3) The supervising physician and the physician assistant voluntarily and gratuitously donate their services;

(4) Prior to providing any patient services, a copy of the temporary practice agreement, signed by both the supervising physician and the physician assistant, is on file at the facility or program and is sent to the board;

(5) The temporary practice agreement is for a specified period of time, limits the services of the physician assistant to those within the usual scope of practice of the supervising physician, and is signed by both the supervising physician and the physician assistant prior to the physician assistant providing patient services; and

(6) The facility or program has notified the board of its intent to provide patient services and utilize licensed physicians and physician assistants under the conditions set out in this subsection.

(i) (1) Notwithstanding any provision of this article to the contrary, a physician assistant licensed pursuant to this article or licensed, certified, or otherwise authorized to practice in any other state or federal jurisdiction and whose license, certification, or authorization is in good standing who responds to a need for medical care created by conditions which characterize those of a state of emergency or public health emergency may render such care that the physician assistant is able to provide with such supervision as is available at the immediate scene or at the local site where such need for medical care exists or at a relief site established as part of a state or local safety plan established pursuant to Chapter 3 of Title 38. Such services shall be provided by a physician assistant in response to the request of an appropriate state or local official implementing a state or local emergency management plan or program, and in accordance with applicable guidelines established by such officials or plans. The authority granted by this Code section shall last no longer than 48 hours or such time as the board may establish under guidelines for supervision of the physician assistant rendering medical care.

(2) For the purposes of this subsection, the term "public health emergency" has the same meaning as in paragraph (6) of Code Section 38-3-3, and the term "state of emergency" has the same meaning as in paragraph (7) of Code Section 38-3-3.

(j) A physician assistant shall be allowed to make a pronouncement of death pursuant to authority delegated by the supervising physician of the physician assistant and to certify such pronouncement in the same manner as a physician.

(k) It shall be unlawful for a physician to be an employee of a physician assistant, alone or in combination with others, if the physician is required to supervise the physician assistant; provided, however, that this shall not apply to arrangements of this nature which were approved by the board on or before July 1, 2009. Arrangements approved prior to such date are nontransferable. Such conduct shall be subject to sanctions by the board as to the physician and the physician assistant.

State Codes and Statutes

State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > Georgia > Title-43 > Chapter-34 > Article-4 > 43-34-103

O.C.G.A. 43-34-103 (2010)
43-34-103. Application for assistant; number of assistants; new job descriptions; scope of duties; receipt of samples; employment by nonpracticing physicians; delegated authority; temporary practice agreements; assistance during public health emergencies; pronouncement of death.


(a) (1) In order to obtain licensure as a physician assistant, an applicant shall submit an application to the board. Such application shall include:

(A) Evidence submitted by the applicant of his or her good moral character; and

(B) Evidence of his or her competency in a health care area related to the job description which, as a minimum, shall include:

(i) Evidence of satisfactory completion of a training program approved by the board. If the applicant is not a graduate of an accredited school approved by the board, he or she shall be required to receive board approved refresher training and testing; and

(ii) Evidence that the applicant has passed the Physician Assistant National Certification Examination (PANCE) administered by the National Commission for the Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA), or its successor, or the National Association for the Certification of Anesthesia Assistants, (NACAA) or its successor.

The board may issue a temporary permit to any applicant for licensure who has satisfied the provisions of division (i) of this subparagraph and who is an applicant for the next available board approved or administered examination or who has completed this examination and is awaiting the results of such examination. The temporary permit shall expire upon notification of the applicant's failure to achieve a satisfactory score on the board approved or administered examination. A physician assistant licensed pursuant to this paragraph shall not be authorized to perform any medical acts of any sort except as approved for utilization by a physician in a job description pursuant to paragraph (2) of this subsection. The board may grant an inactive licensure status to a physician assistant who is licensed pursuant to this article but who is not practicing with the supervision of a board approved primary supervising physician.

(2) In order to obtain approval for the utilization of a physician assistant, whether the utilization is in a private practice or through a public or private health care institution or organization, the licensed physician who will be responsible for the performance of such physician assistant shall submit an application to the board which shall include:

(A) Evidence that the physician assistant is licensed pursuant to paragraph (1) of this subsection;

(B) A job description meeting the requirements of paragraph (4) of Code Section 43-34-102; and

(C) A fee, established by the board; provided, however, that no fee will be required if the physician assistant is an employee of the state or a county government.

(b) (1) No primary supervising physician shall have more than four physician assistants licensed to him or her at a time; provided, however, that no physician may supervise more than two physician assistants at any one time except as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection.

(2) (A) A physician may supervise as many as four physician assistants at any one time while practicing in a group practice in which other physician members of such group practice are primary supervising physicians.

(B) A physician may supervise as many as four physician assistants at any one time while acting as an alternate supervising physician:

(i) In an institutional setting such as a hospital or clinic;

(ii) On call for a primary supervising physician or a group practice; or

(iii) If otherwise approved by the board to act as an alternate supervising physician.

(3) A primary supervising physician shall designate in writing to the board such other physicians who may serve as an alternate supervising physician for each physician assistant licensed to such primary supervising physician. The board shall have authority to approve or deny such designations in whole or in part; provided, however, a physician may be listed as an alternate supervising physician for any number of physician assistants so long as he or she only supervises as many physician assistants at any one time as allowed by paragraph (2) of this subsection.

(c) (1) At all times while providing patient services, a physician assistant shall have a signed job description submitted by his or her primary supervising physician and approved by the board.

(2) Nothing in this article shall prevent a primary supervising physician from submitting to the board a new or amended physician assistant job description.

(d) A physician assistant is authorized to practice in those public or private places or facilities where the supervising physician or alternate supervising physician regularly sees patients, provided that nothing in this article shall prohibit the rendering of services to a patient by a physician assistant who is not in the physical presence of the supervising physician or preclude a physician assistant from making house calls, performing hospital duties, serving as an ambulance attendant, or performing any functions authorized by the supervising physician which the physician assistant is qualified to perform.

(e) A physician assistant may not be utilized to perform the duties of a pharmacist licensed under Chapter 4 of Title 26, relating to pharmacists.

(e.1) (1) In addition to and without limiting the authority granted by Code Section 43-34-23, a physician may delegate to a physician assistant, in accordance with a job description, the authority to issue a prescription drug order or orders for any device as defined in Code Section 26-4-5, or to issue any dangerous drug as defined in Code Section 16-13-71 or any Schedule III, IV, or V controlled substance as defined in Code Section 16-13-21 on a prescription drug order or prescription device order form as specified in paragraph (3) of this subsection. Delegation of such authority shall be contained in the job description required by this Code section. The delegating physician shall remain responsible for the medical acts of the physician assistant performing such delegated acts and shall adequately supervise the physician assistant. If an existing job description for a physician assistant does not contain such authority to order a prescription drug or device order as provided by this subsection, that physician assistant may not issue any such prescription drug or device order until a new job description delegating such authority is submitted to and approved by the board. Nothing in this Code section shall be construed to authorize the written prescription drug order of a Schedule I or II controlled substance.

(2) Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to create a presumption of liability, either civil or criminal, on the part of a pharmacist who is duly licensed under Title 26 and who in good faith fills a prescription drug or device order presented by a patient pursuant to this subsection. The pharmacist shall presume that the prescription drug or device order was issued by a physician assistant duly licensed under this article who has qualified under this Code section to prescribe pharmaceutical agents. The pharmacist shall also presume that the pharmaceutical agent prescribed by the physician assistant is an approved pharmaceutical agent, unless the pharmacist has actual or constructive knowledge to the contrary.

(3) The physician assistant shall only be authorized to exercise the rights granted under this subsection using a prescription drug or device order form which includes the name, address, and telephone number of the prescribing supervising or alternate supervising physician, the patient's name and address, the drug or device prescribed, the number of refills, and directions to the patient with regard to the taking and dosage of the drug. A prescription drug order which is transmitted either electronically or via facsimile shall conform to the requirements set out in paragraphs (1) and (2) of subsection (c) of Code Section 26-4-80, respectively. Any form containing less information than that described in this paragraph shall not be offered to or accepted by any pharmacist who is duly licensed under Title 26.

(4) The physician assistant or office staff shall notify the patient that the patient has the right to see the physician prior to any prescription drug or device order being issued by the physician assistant.

(5) Nothing in this Code section shall be construed to authorize a physician assistant to authorize refills of any drug for more than 12 months from the date of the original prescription drug or device order.

(6) A supervising physician or alternate supervising physician shall evaluate or examine, at least every three months, any patient receiving controlled substances.

(7) In addition to the copy of the prescription drug or device order delivered to the patient, a record of such prescription shall be maintained in the patient's medical record in the following manner:

(A) The physician assistant carrying out a prescription drug or device order shall document such order either in writing or by electronic means; and

(B) Except in facilities operated by the Division of Public Health of the Department of Community Health, the supervising physician shall review the prescription drug or device order copy and medical record entry for prescription drug or device orders issued within the past 30 days by the physician assistant. Such review may be achieved with a sampling of no less than 50 percent of such prescription drug or device order copies and medical record entries.

(8) A physician assistant is not permitted to prescribe drugs or devices except as authorized in the physician assistant's job description and in accordance with this article.

(9) The board shall adopt rules establishing procedures to evaluate an application for a job description containing the authority to order a prescription drug or device and any other rules the board deems necessary or appropriate to carry out the intent and purpose of this Code section or to protect the public welfare.

(10) Nothing in this Code section is intended to repeal any rules established by the board relating to the requirements and duties of physician assistants in remote practice sites.

(11) A physician assistant authorized by a primary supervising physician to order controlled substances pursuant to this Code section is authorized to register with the federal Drug Enforcement Administration.

(12) A physician assistant delegated the authority by the primary supervising physician to issue a prescription drug or device order shall be required to complete a minimum of three hours of continuing education biennially in practice specific pharmaceuticals in which the physician assistant has prescriptive order privileges.

A managed care system, health plan, hospital, insurance company, or other similar entity shall not require a physician to be a party to a job description as a condition for participation in or reimbursement from such entity.

(e.2) A physician assistant shall be allowed to request, receive, and sign for professional samples and may distribute professional samples to patients, pursuant to authority delegated by the supervising physician of that physician assistant. Delegation of such authority shall be contained in the job description required by this Code section; provided, however, the office or facility at which the physician assistant is working must maintain a list of professional samples approved by the supervising physician for request, receipt, and distribution by the physician assistant as well as a complete list of the specific number and dosage of each professional sample received and dispensed. In addition to the requirements of this Code section, all professional samples shall be maintained as required by applicable state and federal law and regulations. As used in this subsection, the term "professional samples" means complimentary doses of a drug, medication vouchers, or medical devices provided by the manufacturer for use in patient care.

(f) A physician employed by the Department of Community Health or by any institution thereof or by a local health department whose duties are administrative in nature and who does not normally provide health care to patients as such employee shall not be authorized to apply for or utilize the services of any physician assistant employed by the Department of Community Health or by any institution thereof or by a local health department.

(g) Nothing in this article shall be construed to prohibit a physician assistant from performing those acts the performance of which have been delegated to that physician assistant pursuant to and in conformity with Code Section 43-34-23.

(h) A physician and a physician assistant may enter into a temporary practice agreement exempt from any filing fees with the board by which agreement the physician supervises the services provided by the physician assistant to patients at a specific facility or program that provides medical services only to indigent patients in medically underserved or critical need population areas of the state, as determined by the board, or pursuant to Article 8 of Chapter 8 of Title 31, provided that:

(1) Such services are provided primarily to financially disadvantaged patients;

(2) Such services are free or at a charge to the patient based solely on the patient's ability to pay and provided, further, that such charges do not exceed the actual cost to the facility or program;

(3) The supervising physician and the physician assistant voluntarily and gratuitously donate their services;

(4) Prior to providing any patient services, a copy of the temporary practice agreement, signed by both the supervising physician and the physician assistant, is on file at the facility or program and is sent to the board;

(5) The temporary practice agreement is for a specified period of time, limits the services of the physician assistant to those within the usual scope of practice of the supervising physician, and is signed by both the supervising physician and the physician assistant prior to the physician assistant providing patient services; and

(6) The facility or program has notified the board of its intent to provide patient services and utilize licensed physicians and physician assistants under the conditions set out in this subsection.

(i) (1) Notwithstanding any provision of this article to the contrary, a physician assistant licensed pursuant to this article or licensed, certified, or otherwise authorized to practice in any other state or federal jurisdiction and whose license, certification, or authorization is in good standing who responds to a need for medical care created by conditions which characterize those of a state of emergency or public health emergency may render such care that the physician assistant is able to provide with such supervision as is available at the immediate scene or at the local site where such need for medical care exists or at a relief site established as part of a state or local safety plan established pursuant to Chapter 3 of Title 38. Such services shall be provided by a physician assistant in response to the request of an appropriate state or local official implementing a state or local emergency management plan or program, and in accordance with applicable guidelines established by such officials or plans. The authority granted by this Code section shall last no longer than 48 hours or such time as the board may establish under guidelines for supervision of the physician assistant rendering medical care.

(2) For the purposes of this subsection, the term "public health emergency" has the same meaning as in paragraph (6) of Code Section 38-3-3, and the term "state of emergency" has the same meaning as in paragraph (7) of Code Section 38-3-3.

(j) A physician assistant shall be allowed to make a pronouncement of death pursuant to authority delegated by the supervising physician of the physician assistant and to certify such pronouncement in the same manner as a physician.

(k) It shall be unlawful for a physician to be an employee of a physician assistant, alone or in combination with others, if the physician is required to supervise the physician assistant; provided, however, that this shall not apply to arrangements of this nature which were approved by the board on or before July 1, 2009. Arrangements approved prior to such date are nontransferable. Such conduct shall be subject to sanctions by the board as to the physician and the physician assistant.

Categories