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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

TMA WORKS TO UNTANGLE CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE PERMIT REFORMS

Red tape appears to have entangled one of the medical practice red-tape-busting bills the Texas Legislature passed last year. TMA is working with two state agencies to cut it loose. Physician complaints about hassles and delays in renewing their annual Controlled Substances Registration through the Department of Public Safety (DPS) led lawmakers to give the permits two-year lifespans, align their renewal dates with physicians’ medical licenses, and authorize the Texas Medical Board (TMB) to coordinate the whole process beginning Jan. 1. Unfortunately, DPS has been slow to act, leaving physicians whose permits expired in the past two months just as frustrated as ever. TMA has pushed DPS and TMB officials to the conference table, and we’re now hearing assurances that the renewals will work as the legislature intended “in the near future.” In the meantime, DPS officials tell us the agency will automatically renew current permits that expire in February or March with a temporary, one-year expiration date. DPS will complete the renewal before the permit expires, and those physicians do not have to submit a renewal application or pay a fee. Stay tuned.

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