April 26, 2011
The Honorable Jane Nelson, Chair Senate Health and Human Services Committee
P.O. Box 12068 Austin, TX 78711-2068
Dear Senator Nelson:
Re: SB 1084
The Texas Medical Association strongly opposes SB 1084. As introduced, the bill would establish open ended definitions of complementary and alternative health care services in state law and, in doing so, it would circumvent the existing Occupations Code as well as established provisions for the licensing of practitioners. This is wrong for the state and wrong for our citizens.
We believe this bill would establish a de facto state protected liability shield for any such “provider” who fell within the parameters of this legislation. Simply by adhering to a state sanctioned process of disclosure – without licensure, without certification or without regulation – the “provider” would be shielded from any administrative liability and potentially any civil liability because the “scope of practice” and “standard of care” are defined by each “practitioner” by virtue of the required disclaimer.
Because there is no regulatory function, because there is no agency charged with oversight, and because of the protections offered under the bill to unlicensed and unregulated practitioners, we believe an individual would have no recourse in the event of injury.
We believe this bill is ill conceived at best. At worst, it presents a danger to the health of Texans.
Thank you for the opportunity to present our views to the committee.
Dan McCoy, MD
TMA Council on Legislation
82nd Texas Legislature Testimonies