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Updated Apr 23, 2014 - 3:29 pm

Arizona bill allowing optometrists to prescribe draws flak

PHOENIX — Some Arizona lawmakers and physicians are raising a red flag
about a bill that would allow optometrists to prescribe some drugs that is set
for a vote in the Senate.

Opponents of the bill called it dangerous at a Wednesday press briefing.
Republican Rep. Heather Carter of Cave Creek and Sen. Kelli Ward of Lake Havasu
City say the bill allowing the non-physicians who examine patients for eye
problems and glasses was rammed through the Senate.

Senators approved House Bill 2380 on a 20-7 vote Wednesday. An earlier version
failed in a House committee, but its language was added to an unrelated bill in
the House by Republican Sen. Nancy Barto.

The bill now returns to the House where Carter was trying to gather enough
votes to kill the bill.

Carter and Ward say they believe letting optometrists prescribe certain
medications puts patients at risk because they don’t have the training to
properly monitor for adverse reactions. Ward is a physician.

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