Sticking to a clear narrative emphasizing that the state is not a ‘friendly’ place to practice medicine, The Florida Medical Association emerged as one of the clear winners of the 2011 Legislative Session. Just look at this laundry list of the FMA’s accomplishments:
1. Expert witness: the FMA passed its number-one priority this session, medical liability reform with the expert witness provision. The FMA has been trying to pass expert witness for over a decade, and this was the key provision to the medical liability reform bill for the FMA, even if it had to give in on the “clear and convincing” provision.
2. ‘Docs and Glocks’: the FMA saw that the guns/physicians bill was amended to remove the criminal and civil liabilities and protect physicians. This ensured that physicians can still talk to patients about guns.
3. PIP: Successfully opposed legislation that would have made it more difficult for physicians to get paid in PIP claims; also successfully opposed a host of burdensome regulations on physicians who treat PIP patients.
4. Dispensing: Successfully opposed an across-the-board ban on all physician dispensing and reached a compromise allowing some physicians (such as surgeons) to continue dispensing from their offices (so that legitimate patients, such as those recovering from surgery, can get their medication at their doctor? office.)
5. Scope of Practice: Successfully prevented four different attempts from non-physicians (chiropractors, optometrists, nursepractitionersand pharmacists) to expand their scope of practice.
6. Vaccines: Successfully opposed efforts to deviate from evidence-based recommendations (i.e., efforts to codify a supposed vaccine/autism connection)
7. GME: Successfully secured additional funding for primary care for Graduate Medical Education slots (i.e., Residencies)