Updates Released on State AEDs and Liability Reform

March 25, 2009

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As states consider legislation during their 2009 sessions, Academy staff have been working to stay on top of the issues that are important to our members.

Anti-epileptic Drugs (AED)

  • Connecticut: This bill continues to have legs, as it received the approval to move forward from the CT Public Health Committee to the CT General Law Committee. Staff sent a letter, signed by Stephen Sergay, MB, BCh, President of the American Academy of Neurology, in support of this legislation to members of the Public Health Committee, and has also been working closely with the local epilepsy chapter. The letter was also signed by Anthony G. Alessi, MD, FAAN, who has been working very hard on this specific legislation for quite some time. Another letter of support was sent to the CT General Law Committee on March 23.

  • Iowa: Legislation that would prohibit a pharmacist from substituting an AED without the prescribing physician's consent had been introduced in the Iowa House of Representatives. Staff sent out a letter in support of this legislation, signed by Sergay, as well as an action alert to the 125 Academy members who practice in Iowa, after hearing that this bill was being stalled in the House Human Resources Committee. However, this language has been added to the Senate budget bill, which is currently going through the Senate process.

Liability Reform

  • Hawaii: Legislation introduced in the House of Representatives reforms the medical tort laws by placing a cap on noneconomic damages for physician specialists. This bill has passed the through the House of Representatives and has now been referred to the State Senate, where it continues to wait for a hearing in the Senate Health Committee. Staff have been working with the Hawaii Medical Association in a effort to convince key legislators to give this important legislation a hearing.

For questions or comments, please contact Tim Miller, Health Policy Analyst, at tmiller@aan.com or at (651) 695-2792.