SENATE BUSINESS, PROFESSIONS andECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT COMMITTEE
Curren D. Price, Jr., Chair
Background Information Sheet
SUBMIT 2 COPIES OF ALL BACKGROUND INFORMATION TOROOM 2053 & SEND ELECTRONICALLY, ALSO
TO:Kathleen.email@example.com MEASURE: SB 492 AUTHOR: Hernandez DATE: 4/9/13PLEASE TYPE1. Who is the source of the bill? What person, organization or entity requestedintroduction?
2. What does your bill do?
will remove restrictions in current law to permit optometrists to examine,prevent, diagnose, and treat conditions and disorders of the visual system and thehuman eye to the full extent of their training. The bill permits an optometrist todiagnose, treat and manage additional conditions with ocular manifestations. Toensure public safety is of the highest priority, SB 492 will direct the State Board of Optometry to establish educational and examination requirements of optometristsincluding but not limited to completion of the National Board of Examiners inOptometry. Finally, this bill will permit optometrists to perform vaccinations and allowthem to perform surgical and non-surgical primary care procedures requiring nomore than topical or local anesthetic.
3. Describe existing law on this issue.
The Optometry Practice Act creates the State Board of Optometry, which licensesoptometrists and regulates their practice.
What’s wrong with existing law? Why is this bill needed?
Primary Care Physician Workforce Shortage
According to a report commissioned by the California Health Care Foundation, thenumber of primary care physicians actively practicing in California is at the verybottom range of, or below, the state's need based on Council on Graduate MedicalEducation (Council) estimates. The distribution of these physicians is also poor. In2008, there were 69,460 actively practicing physicians in California, of which only 35percent reported practicing primary care. This equates to 63 active primary carephysicians in patient care per 100,000 persons. According to the Council, 60 to 80primary care physicians are needed per 100,000 in order to adequately meet theneeds of the population. When the same metric is applied regionally, only 16 of
58 counties fall within the needed supply range for primary care