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House of Representatives
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session


Posted: March 3, 2022 12:05 PM
From: Representative Wendi Thomas
To: All House members
Subject: Prescription Privileges for Psychologists
There is a growing national mental health crisis and a shortage of psychiatric specialists to meet the demand. Most psychotropics are currently prescribed by primary healthcare professionals, including physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants; however, these professionals often have limited training in mental health treatment.
Prescribing psychologists can increase patient access to psychotropic medications, reduce long travel and wait times that countless patients currently must deal with, and ensure better follow-up care for patients already on psychotropic medications. Prescribing psychologists can manage medication treatment for most mental health disorders. Importantly, they must earn an additional post-doctoral masters degree emphasizing psychopharmacology and the biological basis of behavior, pass a rigorous national exam, and receive supervision in practice.

Currently five states have prescription authority for psychologists: Iowa, Idaho, Illinois, New Mexico, and Louisiana. Also, prescribing psychologists have safely and effectively prescribed psychopharmacologic medications in the Public Health Service, Indian Health Service, and the US Military for more than 20 years.

I will be introducing a bill that will define the educational requirements for a prescribing psychologist, define the scope of practice of a prescribing psychologist, describe a collaborative agreement between the prescribing psychologist and provider, and identify the formulary for the medications that may be prescribed and the continuing education requirements for prescribing psychologists.

Please join me in cosponsoring this bill.

Introduced as HB2607