Prescribing Psychologists: Still Unsafe for Patients
Tuesday, May 6, 2014
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We knew it would happen this way: A last-minute amendment hurried out in the hope no one would read it too carefully. But despite some new window dressing, HFA #2 to SB 2187 – which would allow psychologists to prescribe – still fails to protect patients.
Among the dangers in the new bill:
• A Woefully Insufficient “Conditional License”: Real clinical training programs involve multiple health professionals who expose trainees to all types of patients, including geriatric patients, children, adolescents, and pregnant women, and do so in a variety of medical settings, including the emergency room.
• Does Not Improve Access: HFA #2 to SB 2187 will not improve access to mental health services. It makes no provisions for telepsychiatry or integrated care, nor does it feature programs to cross-train psychologists in medical schools. In the two states that allow some psychologists to prescribe – Louisiana and New Mexico – less than 10% have pursued prescriptive authority.
To date, four Illinois newspapers have editorialized against SB 2187: the Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Sun-Times, the Rockford Register Star and the Lake County News-Sun. This bill was written to benefit psychologists – not patients. Tell your representative to vote NO, and visit http://coalitionforpatientsafety.com.