Current Status Introducing Body:
HouseBill Number: 4663Primary Sponsor: KirshCommittee Number: 27Type of Legislation: GBSubject: Optometrist, registration asResiding Body: HouseCurrent Committee: Medical, Military, Public and Municipal AffairsCompanion Bill Number: 1119Date Tabled: 19940329Computer Document Number: CYY/15639AC.94Introduced Date: 19940202Last History Body: HouseLast History Date: 19940329Last History Type: Tabled in CommitteeScope of Legislation: StatewideAll Sponsors: Kirsh G. Bailey Boan J. Brown Harwell WaldropType of Legislation: General Bill
Bill Body Date Action Description CMN Leg Involved ____ ______ ____________ ______________________________ ___ ____________ 4663 House 19940329 Tabled in Committee 27 4663 House 19940202 Introduced, read first time, 27 referred to CommitteeView additional legislative information at the LPITS web site.
TO AMEND SECTION 40-37-90, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO QUALIFICATIONS FOR REGISTRATION AS AN OPTOMETRIST, SO AS PROSPECTIVELY TO REQUIRE THERAPEUTIC CERTIFICATION; TO AMEND SECTION 40-37-103, RELATING TO DIAGNOSTIC AND THERAPEUTIC EXAMINATIONS, SO AS TO DELETE THE DIAGNOSTIC CATEGORY AND TO PROVIDE THAT THEY MUST BE APPROVED RATHER THAN ADMINISTERED BY THE BOARD; TO AMEND SECTION 40-37-210, RELATING TO PROCEDURES FOR TAKING AND HEARING COMPLAINTS, SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT HEARING NOTICES MAY BE SENT BY CERTIFIED MAIL; TO AMEND SECTION 40-37-290, RELATING TO OFFICE LOCATION AND POSTING OF REGISTRATIONS, SO AS TO PROHIBIT THE BOARD FROM RESTRICTING OFFICE LOCATION AND THE USE OF MOBILE UNITS.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. Section 40-37-90 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 40-37-90. (A) A person is qualified to receive a certificate of registration as a registered optometrist who:
(1) Has has a minimum of two academic years at an accredited college or university;
(2) Was was graduated from an accredited school or college of optometry which required four years' attendance and which grants the degree of doctor of optometry (O.D.), provided all schools and courses are approved by the board;
(3) Has has satisfactorily passed a satisfactory an examination recognized by the board; or (4)Has has passed the National Board of Optometry Examination or an equivalent examination and has practiced for five years in another state or states and is in good standing in the state in which he was last actively engaged in the practice of optometry;
(5)(4) has satisfied all of the requirements to be therapeutically certified as provided for in Section 40-37-103(B);
(5) Has has not been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor involving moral turpitude, in which case; the record of conviction or a certified copy thereof of the conviction certified by the clerk of the court in which the conviction occurred shall be is conclusive evidence thereof of the conviction.
(B) Notwithstanding subsection (A)(4) an optometrist who holds a valid registration or who is diagnostically certified pursuant to Section 40-37-103(A) is not required to be therapeutically certified as a condition of maintaining the registration or diagnostic certification or obtaining renewal. However, if an optometrist's registration or diagnostic certification is suspended or revoked and the optometrist seeks to have the registration or certification reinstated, the optometrist is required to comply with subsection (A)(4)."
SECTION 2. Section 40-37-103 of the 1976 Code, as added by Act 65 of 1993, is amended to read:
"Section 40-37-103. (A) The board shall certify a licensed optometrist as a diagnostically certified optometrist if the optometrist has:
(1) complied with the educational requirements promulgated by the board; and
(2) passed a pharmaceutical agent examination which must be administered approved by the board.
(B) The board shall certify a licensed optometrist as a therapeutically certified optometrist if the optometrist has:
(1) satisfied the requirements for diagnostic certification;
(2) passed the Treatment and Management of Ocular Disease Examination administered approved by the National Board of Examiners in Optometry; and
(3) taken at least one hundred ten hours of board-approved optometric education courses since December 31, 1988, and after graduation from optometry school, of which at least forty hours must have been clinical instruction specifically related to the diagnosis and treatment of glaucoma and must have been taken under the supervision of an ophthalmologist who must submit a written certification to the Board of Examiners in Optometry that the optometrist has completed the forty hours of clinical instruction required by this item.;
(4) submitted to the board an affidavit stating that the optometrist has had at least twelve hundred hours of clinical training."
SECTION 3. Section 40-37-210 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 40-37-210. (A) The board shall receive complaints by any person against a licensed optometrist and shall require the complaints a complaint to be submitted in written form. Upon receipt of the complaint, the secretary or such other another person as the president may designate shall investigate the allegations in the complaint, and make a report to the board concerning his the investigation. If the board shall then desire to proceed proceeds further, it may, in its discretion, file a formal accusation charging the optometrist with a violation of a provision of this chapter. The accusation shall must be signed by the president or the vice-president on behalf of the board. When the accusation is filed and the board shall set sets a date for hearing thereon, the secretary of the board shall notify the accused in writing not less fewer than thirty days prior to before the hearing and a copy of the accusation shall must be attached to the notice. The accused may appear and show cause why his license should not be suspended or revoked. The accused shall have has the right to be confronted with and to cross-examine the witnesses against him, and he shall have has the right to counsel. For the purposes of such these hearings, the board is empowered to require by subpoena the attendance of witnesses, the production of documents, and to administer oaths and hear testimony, either oral or documentary, for and against the accused. In instances where a board member has made the initial investigation or complaint, he shall the board member may not sit with the board at the hearing of such the complaint.
(B) Such The notice required by subsection (A) may be sent to the accused by registered certified mail, return receipt requested, directed to his the last mailing address furnished to the board. The post office registration receipt signed by the accused, his the accused's agent, or a responsible member of his the accused's household, or office staff, or, if not accepted by the person to whom addressed, the postal authority stamped thereon stamp showing the notice `refused' shall be is prima facie evidence of service of such the notice.
(C) All investigations and proceedings undertaken under the provisions of this chapter shall be are confidential.
Every communication, whether oral or written, made by or on behalf of any a complainant to the board or its agents or any a hearing panel or a member thereof of a hearing panel, pursuant to this chapter whether by way of complaint or testimony, shall be is privileged; and no action or proceeding, civil or criminal, shall lie may be brought against any such a person, by whom or on whose behalf such the communication shall have been was made, by reason thereof."
SECTION 4. Section 40-37-290 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 40-37-290. (A) Nothing in this chapter shall may be construed to limit the number or to prescribe or restrict the location of offices each individual optometrist or group of optometrists may operate; however, mobile units may not be used. Every optometrist must display a separate registration certified by the board in each location in which he the optometrist practices. Duplicate registrations may be obtained from the board by filing an application on a form prescribed by the board and paying the prescribed fees.
(B) Each office shall post in a conspicuous place the office hours that will be maintained. Office hours shall must be determined as those hours in which a licensed optometrist is actually present on the premises. This section shall may not prevent the office from being open for the purpose of accepting appointments or payments or performing other duties that by law do not require the presence of a licensed optometrist. Advertisements or any other public announcement of office hours must specify those hours in which a licensed optometrist is present on the premises.
Mobile units may be used. However, any optometrist practicing in a mobile unit shall obtain a registration for such by the Board. Such unit shall be limited to visiting and providing services to licensed health care facilities within the State."
SECTION 5. In accordance with Section 1-20-60 of the 1976 Code, the existence of the South Carolina Board of Examiners in Optometry is reauthorized for six years.
SECTION 6. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.