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U.S. House Passes H.R.4365 - Protecting Patient Access to Emergency Medications Act of 2016

Monday, November 14, 2016  
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Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 4365, the Protecting Patient Access to Emergency Medications Act of 2016.  The bi-partisan legislation will allow emergency medical services agencies, professionals and medical directors to fulfill their mission to save lives and alleviate pain while also enabling the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) appropriate oversight to prevent drug diversion. More specifically, the Amendment will explicitly permit medical directors to issue standing orders to enable emergency medical services professionals to administer life-saving controlled substances to patients with emergency medical conditions. It will also clarify and codify who is authorized to provide verbal orders for controlled substances. It will provide the option for a single EMS agency registration as well as guidance and clarification regarding receipt, movement and storage of controlled substances for the EMS agency. It will provide the EMS community with a clear set of rules and DEA with auditable records and the necessary authority to prevent drug diversion. Most importantly, the Amendment allows providers to continue serving vulnerable emergency medical patients and providing the best possible care to those who need immediate life-saving and pain medications.

The legislation now heads to the U.S. Senate for consideration.  The ATS will update you as the bill progresses through the legislative process.

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