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Member Alert: Laws Effective Immediately

May 5, 2023

The following new laws enacted by the 2023 General Assembly are effective and may be of special interest to physicians since they could require action or reporting. Others are for information only. Contact the TMA legal department at 615-460-1645 or with any questions.

Action Required by Physicians

Topical Medical Waste Reduction ActPC 150
IF a prescriber decides to offer the unused portion of a “facility-provided medication” to a patient, the medicine must be labeled properly and the prescriber must provide instruction on its use.  Section XXI of our Law Guide topic Prescription Laws should be reviewed to fully understand what medication is eligible and all prescriber requirements.   

Information only – no reporting/action required by physicians
Abortion Law AmendmentsPC 313
Due to the shortcomings of Tennessee’s abortion “trigger” law, TMA and a coalition of other health care provider interests lobbied for passage of SB745/HB883 in 2023. The 2023 law, effective on April 28, 2023, amends the abortion “trigger” law statute to add the termination of ectopic and molar pregnancies to the list of actions that are not included in the definition of abortion. It also repeals the affirmative defense and replaces it as an exception to the offense of criminal abortion. A close read of TMA’s Law Guide topics, Abortion and Abortion FAQs, will help physicians fully understand the changes to this law.  

Physical Therapy Referrals - PC 107 & Statements of Disability - PC 89
Authorizes APRNs and PAs to order physical therapy and allows physical therapists to refer patients whom they currently treat without a referral to an APRN or PA.  Physical therapists may now issue certified statements of disability. Review our Law Guide topic, Physical Therapists to fully understand this law.  

Telemedicine and Behavioral HealthPC 201
The definition of “provider-based telemedicine” was amended to include an exception regarding the in-person encounter and an initial behavioral health evaluation. See page 6 of our Law Guide topic, Telemedicine, for the exact wording of this exception.

Update to 2018 TN Together (Opioid Prescription Law)PC 188
The TN Together law was scheduled to expire in 2023 and legislation was passed to remove the expiration date and made some additional changes to the informed consent provision along with an additional exemption to MME limits for recent cancer treatment. TMA’s Law Guide topic, Prescription Laws, provides additional detail in XIV. D. 9., G. 3., and L. 1. B.